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#2255626 05/04/09 02:33 PM
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I never thought this of my husband of 36 years, I was going through cell phone records and found 2 numbers on his phone that kept occurring and when I confronted him he admitted to an affair with an old high school friend that he says ended 2 years ago but he still was calling her regularly for 2 years several times a week and he also has admitted to giving his number to another women and calling her for over 1 year but swears no sexual relationship with her. It has been 7 weeks of pure torture now and I am still having a hard time getting the images of them together out of my head. I can't trust anything he says or does. Any advice would be appreciated. I want to save my marriage but I don't think I will ever forgive him. This is not the man I thought I knew. I have tried to leave 3 times and I turn around and come back. I have a town house to rent but he keeps begging me to give him another chance. I have put it in the Lord's hands but it is so hard......

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I am so sorry to hear your story. This is the hardest thing that most of us have ever been through. There are things that you can do to restore your marriage if that is what you want. Recovery is possible. Is your husband willing to break all contact with both women forever? Are the other women married? Do their husband's know about this? There are articles on this website that will help. Surviving After the Affair is an excellent book that gives much useful insight into how affairs happen and how to recover from them.


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all contact has been cut off, both women are divorced. I am reading everything and I have read Surviving After the Affair. The one he had the sexual affair with has been a
friend of his since grade school and has been trying to come between us since high school. He new this and chose to go to her when things were not so good between us. I accidently found out be trying to save money on bills. He said the other was a waitress he gave his number to and she wouldn't leave him alone????
I need to find the right way to deal with this as I love him very much but can I ever forget or forgive? I don't know?

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Originally Posted By: fooledafter36yr
all contact has been cut off, both women are divorced. I am reading everything and I have read Surviving After the Affair. The one he had the sexual affair with has been a
friend of his since grade school and has been trying to come between us since high school. He new this and chose to go to her when things were not so good between us. I accidently found out be trying to save money on bills. He said the other was a waitress he gave his number to and she wouldn't leave him alone????
I need to find the right way to deal with this as I love him very much but can I ever forget or forgive? I don't know?

What is he willing to do to prevent this from ever happening again? Is he willing to end all contact with both women forever? Is he willing to do whatever it takes as long as it takes to help you feel safe again? Do your children know? Does family know? Sometimes exposure to family can be helpful if the family supports the marriage. That is your call.


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He is in counseling at this time as I can not do it yet, one visit and I could not handle
it. Our 3 married children all know and of course are in shock that their father would ever do such a thing. His sibling's all know and are also in shock. He has said that he would never put me through this kind of pain again and says that he has failed to protect me as the bible states. I am trying but it is so hard. I still think he is not telling the truth about the affair and why he had to maintain contact with these 2 women on the phone. The children do not know about the 2nd women he way calling only about his affair. They don't know that he was having the affair for almost 2 years
either.

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I would advise two things.

First, arrange for some phone counseling with the Harleys here. They will not waste time on the 'human' aspect of y'all's needs - they will stick to the marriage aspect and give you concrete steps to take to affair-proof your marriage.

Second, I'd read up here about how to eliminate Love Busters and meet Emotional Needs. There are things YOU can do to make it a better marriage for him.

catperson #2258877 05/10/09 10:24 AM
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fooled,

I am so sorry, and I understand exactly where you are. My FWH had an affair when we'd been married 37 years and he became my worst nightmare for many months. He also chose a divorced woman, who would not give up when he told her it was over. She did some very vicious things to me, and he couldn't see her for what she was--a divorced, middle-aged gold digger. His behavior destroyed my soul and I didn't think I could ever be right again.

I know you are looking back over your 36 years, dealing with all those images, all the lies, and wondering who the heII he is. He has shown you the very worst of who he can be and it will take a very long time to get beyond that. So much depends on HIM. Like it or not, he will have to break off ALL contact with both women forever. He will probably lobby for maintaining this life-long "friendship," but he simply cannot do it. That woman (and the waitress as well) is an ENEMY of your marriage.

Is he willing to break off ALL contact with them? It's the least he can do for the pain he's inflicted on you and the damage he's done to your long-term marriage. And your kids. Ugh. I know that part too.

And he must tell you everything you want to know about the affair--everything.

But that's just the beginning. He will also have to make what we call here "just compensation." That includes whatever it takes to help you heal...letting you know where he is all the time, giving you access to his email, his cell phone--all the tools he used to carry out his deception.

He will have to draw up a list of "extraordinary precautions" to live by, in order to protect himself, you and the marriage from any future stupidities. (Example: I will not spend time alone with any woman except my wife. I will not share personal information with any woman not my wife. You get the idea.)

He will have to learn what your emotional needs are and meet them, even when he doesn't FEEL like it (and he probably won't, in the beginning). He'll have to stop any love busting behavior he's developed over the years (angry outbursts, selfish demands, disrespect, independent behavior, dishonesty about anything...).

Even then, it will take a long time to trust him again. And you will NEVER write him another emotional blank check again, nor should you. (I should mention that whilie you are freaked out, fearful and in pain right now, it is common for the BS to experience a surge of anger at WS at about the 6-month mark in recovery, so be prepared.)

I agree that it would help you both to do phone counseling with one of the MB coaches. We talked with Steve Harley (separately, while the A was winding down) and Steve was a tremendous help. Convinced my then-wayward H that there WAS a way back... Folks who've talked with Jennifer Harley Chalmers have found her extremely helpful too. At $195/hr, it's money well spent, as it can help you move more quickly through this horror back to a place of less pain.

Read everything linked to the home page here, and study carefully the information in the books His Needs Her Needs, Love Busters and Surviving An Affair. It's ALL important.

It's especially difficult to do what you must the first year after such devastation, but if you're both committed to overcoming the damage and making your marriage something you BOTH enjoy, it will be well worth it.

I didn't think anything could put us back together again, but reading all the MB material, talking with Steve Harley, doing the MB weekend and the home course work afterward has put us in a better place than we'd been since the earliest years of our marriage. We've eliminated love busters almost entirely, and working hard to meet each other's emotional needs, along with that all-important 15 hours a week (minimum) of undivided-attention time together has helped us fall in love again.

Not perfect, mind you, but better than ever. wink

Please take as much guidance as you can from the MB resources. They are truly marriage savers, as well as marriage builders.

Right Here Waiting


Me BS 61
Him FWS 63
Married 40 years
D-Day 6/30/06
Still can't believe it.
6/08 Recovering nicely. Anything is possible!
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thank you this has been the most helpful response so far.

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Well, my situation is so much like yours that maybe it's easier to relate.

Infidelity has demolished so many here, of all ages, with different implications, depending on stage of life. I ache for the younger betrayeds who have children to care for and must keep up the routine of homework, soccer games, dentist appointments, etc, in the face of the worst pain of their lives.

We older gals find ourselves betrayed, abandoned, rejected and replaced just as we're facing what were supposed to be our peaceful "golden years," our reward for having focused our entire adult lives on our husbands and the families we created together.

Have we been perfect wives? Of course not. Were OUR emotional needs being met? Nope, but we "adjusted" and did the best we could with what our husbands did provide. We figured this was just the way things go, and made the best of it, till they blew our worlds apart, right on the cusp of old age.

I know the hopelessness you feel. The horror at realizing the man you've loved for so many decades is even capable of what he's done to you. Wondering if that is the real him and you'd been fooled all those years. Wondering if you can ever love or trust him again. Partly not WANTING to, and very much being afraid to.

But odds are, the real him is the man you fell in love with so long ago. Cr@p piled on over the years, for both of you. He took a very selfish "fix" for himself, and destroyed you and your marriage in the process. Doesn't mean he can't regret it and find the way back, especially if you're willing to help him.

Odds are that YOU changed over the years, too. Can you see where you contributed to a marriage that was vulnerable? Maybe took him for granted, had your own independent behaviors that left him thinking you didn't really care about him? Did you both maybe learn to live without sex, or ho-hum sex? Did you criticize him when you were angry or resentful? Were you unaware of what his most important emotional needs were, or believe him when he claimed not to have any?

I did all those things. And got the worst lesson of my life. Don't know what you will find when you examine your 36 years together, but my biggest mistake was in failing to meet my FWH's need for recreational companionship. I didn't even know there WAS such a need! So much of what he wanted to do, I found uninteresting, so he did those things alone, and was lonely as a result. I turned that around as soon as I realized how that had helped lead him out of the marriage. There were other things too, of course, and they're all important. But you've got to discuss them with each other, and tell each other explicitly what you can do to make each other feel loved and cherished. That also means eliminating all love-busting behavior.

I credit the MB program with opening my eyes--and his--to all this. So much we never grasped. I think everyone should be required to learn these things and have these discussions as preparation for marriage. Maybe that would wipe out the infidelity pandemic.

Try to take heart. You CAN get past this, although it will take a lot of time and effort. If you both commit to learning how to rebuild the love--not just ending the affair and continuing to live together, sweeping everything under the rug--you have every reason to believe your marriage will be better than it's ever been.

Our work has helped me reframe my H's affair from the most devastating thing that ever happened to me to the wake-up call we needed to do things right...and make both of us happy to be married to each other.

Do NOT give up. Please. Stay with us and learn.

Right Here Waiting

Last edited by rightherewaiting; 05/12/09 08:45 AM.

Me BS 61
Him FWS 63
Married 40 years
D-Day 6/30/06
Still can't believe it.
6/08 Recovering nicely. Anything is possible!
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thank you it's an almost identical situation still in shock after 2 months

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fooled,

It's clear you're in shock, but I'm wondering if you are functioning at all. Please try to convey what's going on NOW. Your husband doesn't want you to leave, although you've tried to do just that three times already. That's all that's come across. Not enough to work with.

If you hope to salvage your marriage, you've GOT to get a grip.

What is going on at home right now? What are you and H doing?

C'mon--you have to engage your BRAIN!

Breathe. Think. Put it into words. There is help here.

RHW


Me BS 61
Him FWS 63
Married 40 years
D-Day 6/30/06
Still can't believe it.
6/08 Recovering nicely. Anything is possible!
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Just to be honest I don't know how I have gotten through the last 2 months. I work as a nurse practitioner and I have for 10 years as well as 10 years as a ER/TRAUMA RN
I can take care of others but when it comes to myself I don't like this out of control feelings that I have. Actually talked one of my female patient's this week out of an affair......59 years old with a husband that ignores her after 39 years of marriage...imagine that........I have read everything _taken inventory of my marriage and what path led to what he did......Becoming more enlightened all the time. Where is the man I married I am still trying to figure that out.......D

BS 54
WS 55 married 36 years this July

3 grown married children with 4 grandchildren and another due in August

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OK. A trauma nurse with a good case of PTSD. God, what irony.

Surely you have access to a doctor who can give you something to get through this awful time...xanax, anti-depressants--something. Tough, sturdy me needed both, so don't go all tough-nurse and make it even harder on yourself. If you need that kind of help, GET IT. You need to get back in control of your emotions before you can help yourself.

I know this is the worst pain you have ever experienced, but really, there is hope.

If you want to recover your marriage, you'll need a PLAN. There is a concrete, specific PLAN that has helped a lot of us here rebuild our marriages and put ourselves back together.

We know the torture you are living right now because we've lived it too. Although you can't imagine it now, you CAN get through this.

Give us a little more information so we can help you:

1. Your husband is begging you not to leave, but it is imperative to know whether the affair is ended. Has he cut off ALL contact with these women? If not, there are steps YOU can take that can hurry that process along.

2. Have you read the basic information linked to the home page of this site? Much of what we say will not make sense unless you do.

There is hope and support here, and the best method for recovering from this nightmare. Please avail yourself of the help here.

And try to breathe. Deep breaths.

We'll be here.


Me BS 61
Him FWS 63
Married 40 years
D-Day 6/30/06
Still can't believe it.
6/08 Recovering nicely. Anything is possible!
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I really appreciate finding you to talk to. My doctor is also a good friend and he did give me the medication I needed. He also went through a painful gut-wrenching divorce from a cheating ex-wife. We sat in his office for over an hour and cried together and his advise was to seek counseling for myself if not with my husband.
He also told me about the power of prayer. WS has cut off all contact with the woman he had the affair with and with the waitress he had phone conversations with. I have confronted both of them and God help me I threatened both of them with some pretty bad language and physical threats that when I was so hurt and angry that I meant at the time but I am trained to help people and save lives but at the time I don't know what I would have done if we didn't live 2 hours from the 2 of them.
I have read everything you talked about, the basic info.The hope and support of this sight is wonderful. Deep breathing is easy for me to teach others as well as
other therapies but God help me when the shoe is on the other foot it's hard.

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Fooled, there are LOTS of us to talk to here. I'll be tied up this weekend, and most of next week, but there will be others to help. I'll try to check in on you while I'm away too.

It's SOOO good you have a doctor who REALLY understands. You sound better already. Too bad he didn't have MB. He might have been able to pull his marriage out of the ditch. You will learn so much about how to do that.

Excellent that your H has broken contact with both women. Be forewarned that it is VERY common for WS OR OW to break that arrangement. You must verify on your own that he's STAYING NC. If he's telling you the truth, he'll be willing to give you access to his email, and swap cell phones with you. Even that couldn't prevent him making/receiving contact, but his attitude about being transparent will go a long way.

It would be ideal if he would write his affair partner a no-contact letter that YOU read, approve and put in the mailbox yourself. Dr. Harley offers a good one that is often mentioned in other threads, but I can never find it when I want it. Maybe someone else will link it for you.

Life-saving trauma nurse or not, you had every right to confront those tramps. Hope you scared the bejesus out of them. Very good that they live two hours away. Does your H have reason to travel to their city? He SHOULDN'T without you along. (Could be worse--he could WORK with OW. Mine did, and it was like birthing a 12-pound baby to get them separated.)

Also good that you've read the basics here on the web site. There's more reading in order (this is kind of like getting a degree...you need the text books). Get His Needs Her Needs, Love Busters and Surviving An Affair from your local bookstore, or from MB's bookstore linked on the home page. Cheaper there anyway.) You'll know by the table of contents which one you should read first.

We can proceed while you wait for them...

Tell us, how is your husband behaving now? Has he apologized, or is he being defensive, or maybe withdrawn? Is he loving--or angry and tense? Have you talked about the affair at all? What has he said?

Would he fill out the Emotional Needs Questionnaire? (Linked from the home page, or in the Five Steps to Romantic Love, the companion workbook for HNHN and Love Busters.) In order to fill his love bank--it's empty right now, no matter how he's behaving) you'll need to identify his emotional needs. At some point, he will be willing to accept your meeting his needs, and later, will even begin meeting some of yours. That usually takes TIME though. Gotta verify NC and assess his level of receptivity. He's most likely still "foggy," but it helps to know WHAT he's saying/doing with you right now.

I know you're still reeling, and I've dumped a lot of information--and questions--on you. So give YOURSELF some of those breathing lessons you're so good at helping other trauma victims with. Yes, it's a whole different smoke when the shoe's on the other foot.

You've calmed down a lot,and you're THINKING. That's a HUGE start. Expect to fall apart from time to time, though. As we say here, it's a roller coaster.

You've got a PLAN, so you're armed and ready, no matter how you FEEL.

Right Here Waiting


Me BS 61
Him FWS 63
Married 40 years
D-Day 6/30/06
Still can't believe it.
6/08 Recovering nicely. Anything is possible!
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How is my husband acting, I would say overdoing it. He has had his meltdowns as well. He has been to the marriage counselor without me 3 times so far and he has been on his knees crying and begging me and GOD for forgiveness. I do believe him but it's so hard to be able to trust anything he says. I know it's not right but I can't say the words" I forgive you" as of yet. We have booked a cabin for 1 week the end of June for vacation and he keeps asking about renewal of wedding vows but I'm not ready for that either. I know I want to stay married to him but this is the hardest thing I have ever done. Just spent the weekend with our 3 children and 4 grandchildren. It was so hard, the time with grandkids was fantastic....I am worn out after spending the weekend with 6-4-3year old and recently turned also 3 year old that had his birthday party this weekend.....Our children were watching us so closely and the 3 of them know that nothing is the same and kept asking if I was ok. They love us both and they are not taking sides and of course they want us to stay together. My husband and I have talked at length about the affair and he gets angry when I ask him the same questions over and over again but he apologizes and does answer. He says all the lies were over with 2 months ago and I want to believe him. He did write that letter using the example in the book by Dr. Harley. His only comment of why he did have the affair was selfish reasons on his part. We were going through a bad period at the time so he decided I didn't love him or want him any more so he found the attention he wanted with a so called old friend.

He has finally came to realize that she was not what his little fantasy world thought she was. He had to call and threaten her again because she won't leave me alone. Called me at work, we change our cell phone numbers and she still got my from one of my co-workers which I intend to deal with. He realizes now she wanted to get between us as she was looking for a 3rd husband to support her. I asked him was his ego that bad that he thought she only wanted an affair and nothing else.........I am still having boughts of anger, screaming at him and then breaking down in tears. We have both shed a lot of tears this week.


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