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#2297991 01/03/10 10:11 AM
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I'm so happy to find a forum where I can finally unload my story! I've had to hold it in for the last week, and I'm going crazy!

Let me start off by talking about the state of our marriage. By all measures, we had a wonderful marriage until last month. We're both in our 30's, have been best friends since college, have fulfilling jobs in our fields, and have two beautiful kids, 1 and 5. We've always focused on having a long and happy life together, read marriage books, treat eachother with respect, support, and love. So what could go wrong?

Well, I hadn't been to this site, so I didn't realize that my wife's greatest need was conversation, and that she needed to have it to feel complete. Don't get me wrong, we talked all the time, but probably not about the right things.

So last month when a friend of mine who worked in Seattle offered to have lunch with her since she'd be there for a conference, I thought it was a really nice gesture, and didn't think anything of it whatsoever. But that was the start. They talked at lunch for an hour, and it really filled her "Love Bank". They continued to talk in the days after that.

A week later, she came to me and said that she was aquiring feelings for my friend, and vice versa. I was hurt, of course, but proud that she had come to me so quickly. They both promised to end communication and work on our own marriages instead. (He's also married with kids.)

A month has passed. But on Christmas Eve I caught her sending a naked picture of herself to him. After Christmas, she finally confessed to everything. She had been continuing the emotional affair for the last month, and had met him at his work to have sex one time (that I know of). I was, and still am devistated.

I won't ramble on to much, but I just need to say that my wife is worth fighting for. She screwed up, big time, and she knows it. She has confessed, she's remoresful, and we're working on gaining back the love and trust that was lost. We renewed our vows to eachother on New Years Eve, and we're doing everything we can to fix this.

The moral of the story is, if the "most important needs" aren't filled by you, they will find someone else to fill them. I wish I'd found this site earlier.

~ StayingStrong32

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Hi SS, sorry you are here. What is your plan for fixing the marriage? Have extraordinary precautions been put in place so this doesn't happen again, such as a committment to never be alone with other men and transparency of all activities, cell phone passwords, computer passwords?

Secondly, has she ended contact with the OM and are you secretly verifying this by monitoring all her activities? Snooping will be your greatest ally in preventing this affair from going any further.

Another essential step will be informing the OM's wife about their adultery. Has she been told the truth so she can protect herself from your wife and her husband? This is essential information about her life which she has a right to know. She also has to know so she can get STD testing.

Keeping the affair a secret only increases the chances that it will resume. Affairs thrive on secrecy.

If the OM's wife is not told, then your wife is free to pursue him and he is free to pursue him. With 2 people watching the adulterers from both end, it is less likely to resume.

I would get the book Surviving an Affair by Dr Willard Harley, which will give you a plan for recovery. And it will take a real PLAN to recover from this. Just ending the affair is not a plan.

Can't we just forgive and forget?

and an excerpt from Requirements for Recovery that sums up what it will take to recover quite well:

Originally Posted by Dr. Harley
The plan I recommend for recovery after an affair is very specific. That's because I've found that even small deviations from that plan are usually disastrous. But when it's followed, it always works. The plan has two parts that must be implemented sequentially. The first part of the plan is for the unfaithful spouse to completely separate from the lover and eliminate the conditions that made the affair possible. The second part is for the couple to create a romantic relationship, using my Basic Concepts as a guide.

I'll describe these two parts to you in a little more detail.

The first step, complete separation from the lover and eliminating the conditions that made the affair possible, requires a complete understanding of the affair. All information regarding the affair must be revealed to the betrayed spouse, including the name of the lover, the conditions that made the affair possible (travel, internet, etc.), the details of what took place during the affair, all correspondence, and anything else that would shed light on the tragedy.

This information is important for two reasons: (1) it creates accountability and transparency, making it essentially impossible for the unfaithful spouse to continue the affair or begin a new one unnoticed, and (2) it creates trust for the betrayed spouse, providing evidence that the affair is over and a new one is unlikely to take its place. The nightmares you experience are likely to continue until you have the facts that
will lead to your assurance that your husband can be trusted.

An analysis of the betrayed spouse's childhood or emotional state of mind in an effort to discover why he or she would have an affair is distracting and unnecessary. It takes precious time away from finding the real solutions. I know why people have affairs: We are all wired for it. Given certain conditions, we would all do it. Given other conditions, however, none of us would do it. So the goal of the first step is to discover the conditions that made the affair possible and eliminate them.

After the first step is completed, the second step is to create a romantic relationship between you and your husband using my 10 Basic Concepts here
as your guide. While your relationship may be improving, it won't lead to a romantic relationship because you are not being transparent toward each other. Unspoken issues in a marital relationship lead to a superficiality that ruins romance.
entire article here



"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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Originally Posted by StayingStrong32
The moral of the story is, if the "most important needs" aren't filled by you, they will find someone else to fill them. I wish I'd found this site earlier.

SS, people cheat because they have poor boundaries. Your wife had very poor boundaries and if this is not corrected, it will happen again.

Steve Harley of Marriage Builders said this once:

Quote
"As long as you believe that your H had an affair because his emotional needs were not being met (as a *primary* reason) you will be meeting his emotional needs out of fear, there will always be a gun held to your head. Your H had an affair because he failed to protect HIMSELF from his own vulnerabilities, period. He is accountable and responsible for all"


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

Exposure 101


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Tell other mans WIFE IMMEDIATELY!!! Then expose to her family, your family, etc. DUDE

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Welcome to MB, SS. I'm sorry that these events brought you here.

Your wife did the right thing in confessing her affair to you, and you both seem to be on the road to recovery. However, I would caution you (the betrayed spouse) that your wife might not be fully engaged in recovery yet.

From what you have written, she only confessed to you "after Christmas", so that was probably about 1 week ago. At this stage, it would be normal for your wife to be exhibiting signs of withdrawal and unhappiness at missing her affair partner.

You do not say that she is doing so. It might be that because the affair was short-lived (beginning only in December?), your wife had not developed addictive feelings and so withdrawing from the affair is relatively easy for her. However, speaking from my own experience with my WH, lack of withdrawal can sometimes meant that the affair partners are still in touch, so the affair has not ended. If it has not ended there is no reason for her to feel low. However, if it does not end with complete non-contact, your wife is giving and receiving love bank deposits from another man, not you, and I'm sure you do not want another party involved in your marriage. Emotional contact with another man is devastating, and physical contact will resume soon enough also.

Have you read all the free articles in the How To Survive Infidelity section of this site? You should do so, including the letters concerning unfaithful wives AND husbands. Dr Harley's advice is systematic and consistent, regardless of the particular details of the marriage and the affair.

You must read the article Four Rules to Guide Marital Recovery After an Affair and follow the guidelines. If your wife is already doing all the things Dr Harley recommends and is being honest with you, then you are off to a great start.

You did not ask a specific question. Do you have one?


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Thank you for all the great information, everyone!

I confronted the OM immediately, and let them both know that no more communication will happen between them, or there would be severe consequences. In addition, I told him I would tell his wife unless he did. And he apparently has now. I plan on confirming that with her this week.

I intend on following all the advice presented here. I will make the bounderies very clear, and I will insist that everything is shared. She has confessed everything to her family and to mine, which took an increible amount of bravery on her part. She has displayed that she is committed to this family and making our marriage work. For that, I am so greatful. I honestly can't imagine having to goIng through some of the D stories I've read on this forum.


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She has talked to me about missing the conversations she had with the OM. She is definetely down, but we've been talking a lot about it, and I'm doing my best to fill that void that he was filling. I will certainly go through all the articles, and I'm confident that she will read them with me and take every step that is suggested. I can't promise that some contact won't occure in the future, but who initiates it, whether it is done in secrecy, and what comes out of it is what really matters. All I can do is pray that she'll make the right choice. I must believe that she will.

I guess I don't really have a question. I just wanted to get it off my chest, and to recieve confirmation from the forum that I'm not the only one, this entirely my fault, and that there is light at the end of the tunnel. Every response has been tremendously helpful, so far. Thanks everyone for the encouragement.


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Originally Posted by StayingStrong32
I confronted the OM immediately, and let them both know that no more communication will happen between them, or there would be severe consequences. In addition, I told him I would tell his wife unless he did. And he apparently has now. I plan on confirming that with her this week.

Good! Please do contact the OM's W yourself and make sure she has all the facts about the affair. It is not uncommon for a WS to spin the story to the BS if he thinks you are going to tell her. A typical spin would be "MrBS [you] is a jealous wackjob who believes everyone is trying to get in his wife's pants. He has imagined i am having an affair with his wife!" So when you do call, she is furious that you would try and tell her a lie about an affair. So, be prepared to overcome his likely spin by being willing to produce all your evidence of the affair.

And most importantly, SPY on your wife so this doesn't happen again. Trusting your spouse TOO MUCH is what has led to this affair. I wouldn't make that mistake again. Put a GPS on her car, install flexispy on her phone and put a keylogger on her computer. She will be very tempted to contact him again so you will want to catch it early in order to nip it in the bud.

It is not lack of trust that ruins marriages, but a lack of boundaries.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

Exposure 101


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Originally Posted by StayingStrong32
I can't promise that some contact won't occure in the future, but who initiates it, whether it is done in secrecy, and what comes out of it is what really matters. All I can do is pray that she'll make the right choice. I must believe that she will.

She will need your help in preventing a reocurrance. Your trust that she will do the right thing is very misplaced and DANGEROUS to your marriage. This affair happened because of loose boundaries and a misplaced sense of trust, it would be hazardous to continue that attitude.

Will she send the OM a no contact letter as recommended by Dr Harley in Surviving an Affair?

Originally Posted by Dr. Harley
My advice is to write a final letter in a way that the victimized spouse would agree to send it. It should begin with a statement of how selfish it was to cause those they loved so much pain, and while marital reconciliation cannot completely repay the offense, it's the right thing to do. A statement should be made about how much the unfaithful spouse cares about his spouse and family, and for their protection, has decided to completely end the relationship with the lover. He or she has promised never to see or communicate with the lover again in life, and asks the lover to respect that promise. Nothing should be said about how much the lover will be missed. After the letter is written, the victimized spouse should read and approve it before it is sent
here



[from SAA, pg 58]

OW, I want you to know that out of respect and love for my wife and children, I have come to realize that I must never see or talk to you again. My relationship with you was a cruel indulgence that BS did not deserve. While I cannot completely repay BS for the pain I caused her, I will do my best to become the husband she has been missing. I care a great deal for my family and I would not want to do anything to risk their happiness. I will not make any further contact with you and I do not want you to make any contact with me. Please respect my desire to end our relationship.

Sincerely, XXXXX



"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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Originally Posted by StayingStrong32
I confronted the OM immediately, and let them both know that no more communication will happen between them, or there would be severe consequences. In addition, I told him I would tell his wife unless he did. And he apparently has now. I plan on confirming that with her this week.

I intend on following all the advice presented here. I will make the bounderies very clear, and I will insist that everything is shared. She has confessed everything to her family and to mine, which took an incredible amount of bravery on her part. She has displayed that she is committed to this family and making our marriage work. For that, I am so greatful. I honestly can't imagine having to goIng through some of the D stories I've read on this forum.


32,
I don't have anything to add to the good advice you've already gotten, only to amplify it: As Melody Lane said, "Keeping the affair a secret only increases the chances that it will resume. Affairs thrive on secrecy. If the OM's wife is not told, then your wife is free to pursue him and he is free to pursue her. With 2 people watching the adulterers from both end, it is less likely to resume."

There is no reason for you to trust this guy, and no reason for you to hold off a moment longer on telling his wife. Failing to do so is tantamount to acting as his enabler. He's no friend of yours and he needs to understand that you & your marriage are not to be trifled with.



Me: FWH, 50
My BW: Trust_Will_Come, 52, tall, beautiful & heart of gold
DD23, DS19
EA-then-PA Oct'08-Jan'09
Broke it off & confessed to BW (after OW's H found out) Jan.7 2009
Married 25 years & counting.
Grateful for forgiveness. Working to be a better husband.
"I wear the chain I forged in life... I made it link by link, and yard by yard" ~Jacob Marley's ghost, A Christmas Carol
"Do it again & you're out on your [bum]." ~My BW, Jan.7 2009
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Even if you "agreed" with OM, struck a deal with him not to tell his wife, you have struck a deal with the devil here. You cannot count on him to act in good faith.

Additionally, how would you feel if a third party struck a deal with your wife to keep her future affairs secret from you? Not only would you be outraged at your spouse, you would be outraged that a third party would so callously agree to deceive you.

Exposure will suck for him. There's a good chance he will call your wife in a screaming rage.

Guess what? That was a GREAT thing for my marriage. The day he totally lost it with her over the phone was the day she realized that I had NEVER totally lost it with her. I'd never gotten angry enough to scream at her hysterically and make threats... even in the face of the greatest trauma of my life.

So man up, and be ready to face the other man's wife with evidence. Not only do you have a responsibility to your marriage to ensure that the other man is being watched closely by his spouse, and an additional incentive to prevent the other man from ever contacting your wife again, but you have a societal obligation to let this poor betrayed wife know the truth about her own relationship.

The truth is always a defense.


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Originally Posted by StayingStrong32
I'm so happy to find a forum where I can finally unload my story! I've had to hold it in for the last week, and I'm going crazy!

Let me start off by talking about the state of our marriage. By all measures, we had a wonderful marriage until last month. We're both in our 30's, have been best friends since college, have fulfilling jobs in our fields, and have two beautiful kids, 1 and 5. We've always focused on having a long and happy life together, read marriage books, treat eachother with respect, support, and love. So what could go wrong?

Well, I hadn't been to this site, so I didn't realize that my wife's greatest need was conversation, and that she needed to have it to feel complete. Don't get me wrong, we talked all the time, but probably not about the right things.

So last month when a friend of mine who worked in Seattle offered to have lunch with her since she'd be there for a conference, I thought it was a really nice gesture, and didn't think anything of it whatsoever. But that was the start. They talked at lunch for an hour, and it really filled her "Love Bank". They continued to talk in the days after that.

A week later, she came to me and said that she was aquiring feelings for my friend, and vice versa. I was hurt, of course, but proud that she had come to me so quickly. They both promised to end communication and work on our own marriages instead. (He's also married with kids.)

A month has passed. But on Christmas Eve I caught her sending a naked picture of herself to him. After Christmas, she finally confessed to everything. She had been continuing the emotional affair for the last month, and had met him at his work to have sex one time (that I know of). I was, and still am devistated.

I won't ramble on to much, but I just need to say that my wife is worth fighting for. She screwed up, big time, and she knows it. She has confessed, she's remoresful, and we're working on gaining back the love and trust that was lost. We renewed our vows to eachother on New Years Eve, and we're doing everything we can to fix this.

The moral of the story is, if the "most important needs" aren't filled by you, they will find someone else to fill them. I wish I'd found this site earlier.

~ StayingStrong32

This is simply untrue of people with integrity. If their needs are unfulfilled, an honorable person communicates this and takes steps to fix the marriage. An affair is a cowardy, dishonest act and not everyone in your wife's situation would have cheated as she did.

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Follow up with OMW to confirm exposure. Then no more business trips to the OM's city for WW.

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The last part is setting up boundaries. You were given a warning but did not respond. How will be you response next time?

Keep reading the MB articles...


But I, being poor, have only my dreams; I have spread my dreams under your feet; Tread softly because you tread on my dreams -Yeats
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Originally Posted by StayingStrong32
I confronted the OM immediately, and let them both know that no more communication will happen between them, or there would be severe consequences.
Stop telling your enemy your game plan.

Originally Posted by StayingStrong32
In addition, I told him I would tell his wife unless he did. And he apparently has now...
Whoever told you this is lying (or being lied to)
OM has not told his wife the truth about the affair. If he told her ANYTHING it's a complete rework of the truth to make the affair seem like nothing and you seem like a crazy person.


Originally Posted by StayingStrong32
I plan on confirming that with her this week..
Call her now, and with your wife present. When OMW starts denieng what you are saying, put you wife on the phone to confirm it.
Do this NOW!

Have your wife write a letter of No-Contact to OM, review it with her, and mail it together.


I intend on following all the advice presented here. I will make the bounderies very clear, and I will insist that everything is shared. She has confessed everything to her family and to mine, which took an increible amount of bravery on her part. She has displayed that she is committed to this family and making our marriage work. For that, I am so greatful. I honestly can't imagine having to goIng through some of the D stories I've read on this forum. [/quote]


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Just to give everyone an update. I had my wife write a "No Contact" letter last night, and she sent it after I approved. Today I e-mailed the other wife and asked her what she knew had happened. Well, it turned out the guy was telling the truth, and he had told his W every last detail. The shocker was, he told her even more then my W told me. So, we're sitting down tonight to discuss details (which the OW has already told me), and we're going to try and practice some "Radical Honesty". She knows I talked to the OW and that she told me everything, so this should be interesting to see what she shares. Maybe there's more that we both don't know.

I've also established some more strict boundaries with her. She can no longer spend any time with another guy without me there. I trusted her before to be able to do this, but she's shown that she can't.

She's also agreed to go through this site with me and read all the content and advice on how to progress after an affair. This is making things very hopeful that we will get through this together. She's still definitely in her "fog", and we've discussed that. She had really strong feelings for this guy, and she may have even thought it was love. But it is definitely over now, and only time will tell if she will be able to resist any temptation she has while still in the fog. Does anyone have advice on how to treat her while she's in this state of "foginess"?


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Originally Posted by StayingStrong32
I've also established some more strict boundaries with her. She can no longer spend any time with another guy without me there. I trusted her before to be able to do this, but she's shown that she can't.

good job!! These are boundaries that EVERY married person should observe, SS. The absence of boundaries in marriage is what leads to affairs. It is not lack of trust that ruins marriages, but a lack of boundaries.

Good job! smile


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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Originally Posted by StayingStrong32
Does anyone have advice on how to treat her while she's in this state of "foginess"?

Just be kind and thoughtful and snoop like a bloodhound!


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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Originally Posted by StayingStrong32
Today I e-mailed the other wife and asked her what she knew had happened. Well, it turned out the guy was telling the truth, and he had told his W every last detail. The shocker was, he told her even more then my W told me.
Anyone who knows the passwords to an E-Mail adress can log on it...
You where probably talking to OM, unless you have atleast called OMW, you don't know who you where E-Mailing.

Call or go visit her!


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So it is now clear that your wife did not tell you the entire truth. It is important that she be tested for STD's. These are the consequences to affairs.

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