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Update: I told my 21 year old. It didn't go so well. She wishes I hadn't told her. She suffers from anxiety (something she's getting therapy for) and told me she has been anxious about me and her father getting a divorce since she was in 8th grade. My H used to complain to her about our marital issues and when she was 13, she told him to stop but then was worried about his emotional state. I think she bares the burden of so many people emotional issues and has been burdened by our marital issues for so long. There was a lot that she witnessed that I didn't realize she had. Anyway, she told me some painful truths like that I was very dismissive and didn't take the mental health needs of our family members seriously. She's right about that. Although she wishes I didn't tell her, I am glad I did because it made me realize what an impact my bad marriage has had on her and probably on my other two kids (ages 13 and 15) whom I haven't told yet.

Another update: my husband lost the election. I was glad. He was mad that I was glad. "How can you be my wife and be happy that I lost." I told him we were never on the same page to start with so why wouldn't I be happy when I asked him not to run and focus on our marriage instead.

Now my new question: Will I ever get over his affair? Sometimes I look at him and all I think is "you're a liar and a cheater" and "why am I with this person who lied and cheated on me for 5 years?!". I keep having triggers. We are in marriage counseling and we have some good moments but the affair is still present in my life and I am concerned I may never get over it. DD was September 25, 2021. Should I still be in this state of hurt and anger at this point? I wish this could all be behind me but it is still such a present painful experience.

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Originally Posted by Flesh vs. Spirit
Now my new question: Will I ever get over his affair? Sometimes I look at him and all I think is "you're a liar and a cheater" and "why am I with this person who lied and cheated on me for 5 years?!". I keep having triggers. We are in marriage counseling and we have some good moments but the affair is still present in my life and I am concerned I may never get over it. DD was September 25, 2021. Should I still be in this state of hurt and anger at this point? I wish this could all be behind me but it is still such a present painful experience.
You ask a new question, but there are several points that I made to you in my earlier replies that you have not addressed.


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Originally Posted by SugarCane
Originally Posted by Flesh vs. Spirit
I would agree that I am more of the taker in our marriage and he is the giver...
Someone who had a 5 year affair in his marriage can't possibly be described as the giver! Having an affair is the very definition of taking!

What did you do to him for all those years that makes you accept responsibility for your bad marriage? Could you describe how you behaved, and how you felt when you were doing it? Why were you so unmotivated in your marriage?

Without what you describe as your command from God, would you have left him over the affair and his lukewarm reactions ever since?

Now I see that I never responded to this question. My H and I are currently reading SAA and I realize that during the course of our marriage, I have been guilty of most of the love busters Dr. H discusses, but primarily independent behavior. I just basically lived my life as if he didn't exist and did my own thing except I didn't cheat. In the first 5 or so years of our marriage, my H complained a lot and I would try to change but I never sustained my efforts and then my H finally just became withdrawn and then started practicing independent behavior himself (which contributed to his affair). I honestly think I wasn't motivated in my marriage because it was just easier living as "a single person" instead of as a unit. I don't think I have real love for my husband but I have commitment and loyalty. I am hoping that going through the MB program will help to build the love that I lack.

To answer your second question, if it hadn't been for the command from God, I would have left as soon as I found out. In fact, that's what I wanted to do but he asked if we could try in earnest one more time so that's where we are - trying.

Honestly speaking, we are making progress. We see a marriage counselor every other week, we have been talking more, being more honest, dating more, having more sex - however, I still have periodic thoughts of leaving, especially when I think about his betrayal. There's a part of me that really wants him to suffer for what he did and then there's a part of me that just doesn't really care about him but I want to care about him. I am hoping that doing the recommended things will lead to a change of heart in me where I really care.

This week, my H is in Jamaica for his brother's wedding. I didn't want to go with him because when they made the reservations months ago, I was contemplating divorce and I was in the thick of all my emotions. Now it's been months but I am glad that I didn't go because I'm jaded and it's hard for me to celebrate weddings so I would rather keep my negative emotions to myself. I hope that I will miss my H these days that he is gone. If I don't miss him, then I'll know I still have a lot of work to do to fall in love with him. When I dropped him off at the airport, I was excited because I get to do whatever I want for the next four days (which is mostly nonstop working). I'm just going to keep putting one foot in front of the other hoping that the things I'm trying will lead to true, consistent, and permanent love for him.

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Originally Posted by SugarCane
Originally Posted by Flesh vs. Spirit
[Thanks for merging my thread. I am new to the forum so not sure of the best way to post. If I have different questions related to my situation, should I start a new thread or just continue to respond to my original one? For example, right now I would like to post a question about whether anyone had regrets telling their children. I am specifically looking for people who might have regretted telling their kids (I don't want to do it the wrong way and I want my husband and I to be on the same page regarding telling the kids). If I just add this question to an existing thread, how do I get applicable people to respond to it?
The issue for people who want to respond to your posts is that they need to know your recent history in order to understand the context of your question. Speaking as a poster, I find it time-consuming to have to find someone's older threads and read them first before being able to return to the current one to answer the question. If someone were to start, say six new threads for each question (and we have so many questions when there has been an affair), I would find it very irritating to have to read a whole series of threads before I could reply.

Your questions are basically about the one situation. You are asking about the different steps you need to take, but you are in the same position that you were in last week, dealing with the same aftermath of the same affair that brought you here. There is no need to start a new thread for each question.

On exposure: I'd be very surprised if anyone were to post and tell you they regretted exposing to their children.

I recommend that you read
this thread about exposure. it has collected together years of experience from many posters. There is a section in it about exposing to children.

I want to warn you that you must not seek to be on the same page as your husband about exposing, to your children or to anyone else. Your husband is unlikely to ever be on the same page as you about exposing; if he had his way he would not allow you to expose at all. Who wants their shameful behaviour to be revealed to people that know and love them, especially their kids? If you try to do this from the same page, he will try and water down what you are trying to tell the kids. He will agree to your saying something like "Dad made a mistake, but he is not doing it any more and we are okay now". The "mistake" will not be explained and the harm he has caused you will be glossed over. He might even try to say that in some way, the affair was your fault because the marriage was bad. Watering down and justification defy the purposes of exposing, which are to get support for you, to warn your children of the identity of the other woman, and to give them an education on the immorality of affairs. They know this in theory but they need to see at first hand the hurt that the affair has caused you for it to really mean something.

I hope also that the Exposure thread will cause you to reassess the people to whom the affair is already knowledge. When you wrote to the Harleys, Joyce didn't think that you could have exposed because of the way you worded something. However, on this thread you have spoken about the number of people that know. The thing is, their "knowing" is not the same as your having done a proper exposure. If you did not tell them yourself, and if you did not ask for their help to talk to your husband about his wrongdoing, you should consider doing this properly now.

You told us that OW eventually married your husband's godfather, and that he and his godfather are now estranged. I hope you realise that you and your husband can now never see his godfather and wife again, because your husband must do total non-contact with OW for life - that is, if you are to recover your marriage.

However, as I said, I don't think you should be trying to recover your marriage because your husband is not showing any desperation to keep you. I still think you should write to Dr Harley with the information that he refuses to give up politics.

It strikes me that your husband has not been trying to rebuild his marriage at all. It was you who wrote to Dr Harley, and you who are here now trying to do the work of rebuilding, while your husband tells you he will not give up his political dreams, has recently tried to restart the affair, and is upset with his godfather for marrying his lover.

His behaviour, post affair, is appalling.
There are also a number of points in this post to which you did not respond.


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Did you ever write Dr. Harley as SugarCane suggested?


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Blended Family with 7 kids between us
Too much hurt and pain on both sides that my brain hurts just thinking about it all.



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I didn't write Dr. Harley about my husband not giving up politics. I don't think Dr. H's position will change on that. When I initially wrote in, he said that 1) politics is an industry full of affairs especially when the political position requires travel and 2) my husband should find another way to support the community outside of politics. My H intends to run again and he would like for me to support him. Prior to finding out about the affair, I was very supportive of my H's political ambitions but after finding out, I was not but mostly because I didn't want to be the fake, smiling wife by his side as our family was falling apart.

I might write a follow-up email to Dr. H. I think first, I need to ask my H if he is going to run again whether I am by his side or not. If he says yes, then I'll follow up with Dr. H. If he says no, then I will see that being in agreement is more important to him than politics.

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To SC: here are my responses to some of the points you brought up in your earlier response to me.

Regarding exposure: I have exposed it to several of my friends and family: my sister and parents know, my closest friends know (some of these are also his friends) and I also exposed it to our 21 year old daughter (though I partially regret doing that because she essentially told me I shouldn't have told her and she doesn't want to be involved in our marital problems and prefers for us to stop being selfish and just take care of her brothers who are teens and still living at home. She now refuses to talk to my H and also doesn't want to talk about the topic with me). My H told my pastor and his family.

The only people who don't yet know on my side are my brother and my two teenage boys. I am struggling with telling my boys because it is hard to raise teenage boys without a father and if I tell them, they might start disrespecting my H and they listen to him more than they currently listen to me. Exposure will strain their relationship especially now as they are developing into young men and need their father's guidance. I think exposure would be good for me but not for them. And since the exposure to my daughter was not well received, I need to be wise about the exposure to my teen sons, including one who struggles with anxiety like his big sister. I'm still praying about that.

Regarding the OW and non-contact: My H blocked her number and has not been in contact with her; however, he was invited to attend his godbrother's wedding (the son of his godfather who is now the OW's husband). The wedding is in January. He really wants to go because he is close to his godbrother but I told him that his godfather and the OW would be there so he can't go - that's something he has to give up because he can't have any contact with her and I definitely don't want to see her because I might lose my temper and do something terrible. Our counselor said we should wait and see how I feel closer to January but I'm not changing my mind. The counselor feels the best option is for both of us to attend the wedding together but I don't want him to be in the same room as her nor do I want to be in the same room as her. We haven't brought up the matter in a while.

Regarding my H's efforts - he is making some efforts to recover the marriage but he has his own wounds and resentment from my love busters. We are currently reading SAA, we are also completing the emotional needs questionnaire, we are dating more, being more honest with each other and attending marriage counseling every other week.

I think the bottom line for me is whether we can move beyond this situation to a healthier marriage.

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So who did you expose to on OW’s side? Did you tell her parents?


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Too much hurt and pain on both sides that my brain hurts just thinking about it all.



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Originally Posted by BrainHurts
So who did you expose to on OW’s side? Did you tell her parents?

I didn't expose to anyone on the OW's side? What would be the point of doing that? The affair ended three years ago and my H's family knows as well as mine except for my brother and my boys whom I do intend to inform. I think the OW's two daughters might know and of course her current husband is in the mix since he was part of the drama. Also, her mother new about the affair. I'm not sure what the point would be of exposing to anyone else on her side.

I am currently making a list of questions to ask my husband about the affair when we finally sit down and hash it all out once and for all. Let me know if you have any suggestions of questions I should include on my list.

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