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Nellie1 Offline OP
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Keeping kids in the dark is a huge mistake. <P>I wish someone had told me when I was a teenager that almost all divorces are a result of infidelity. I wish I had known in my early 20's, when my then live-in boyfriend, later H, suddenly started demanding "privacy" and telling me that he wanted to go places alone without letting me know where he was, that he was actually seeing someone else. This behavior lasted a couple of months, and then completely disappeared, only to reappear when his affair started in 98. For 20 years I had no clue, attributing his behavior to anger over something completely different that wasn't even really an issue. I wish someone had not let me be so naive. I would not have wasted a quarter of a century of my life with him, I would not have had six children with him only to have him devastate them. <P>I wasn't put in the position of telling my older kids that their father was having an affair. One of them told me. I can't imagine hiding that information from teenagers. The younger kids don't know all the details, though obviously they know their father was living with her while still married to me. I worry about how they are going to react when they are old enough to realize the full impact of what that really means. I can't imagine how horrible it would be to find out about your father's infidelity as an adult. It would be similar, I imagine, but in many ways worse, than finding out as an adult that you were adopted. Your whole childhood would feel like a lie. I think it is far better for the kids to know what is going on, as well as they can understand it at the time. When they are young, it is probably enough to let them know that living with or dating someone else while you are married is very wrong, without going into the sex issue. But as my son once said, you should NEVER keep secrets from your children.

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Hi Nellie -<P>I agree with what you've said. Children should not be lied to or kept in the dark and left with no alternative then their imaginations to try to figure out what is happening to the people they love and look to for safety and support.<P>Their worlds should not have to crumble without even knowing why.....we're not even children, and are one half of what has gone on and look how we have had to see our life crumble!!! Imagine what it is like for them.<P>Children are not stupid....they absorb all that go on around them. They might not understand the true meaning or details, but they know the results. Like we have to process, so do they.<P>What exactly do you mean by NOT "accept" what is wrong? What is your definition of accept? <P>I believe that one's motives play a detrimental part in discussing things with the kids. If a parent (or parents) are looking for allies against the "wrong" and use not lying to the kids to simply let them get mad at the offender also - well, that's WRONG. <P>If, however, the children are angry and confused and either ask or need some explanations for their mental well-being - then the proper motivation would really be to help them understand how "wrong" happens and what can be done about it. To inform them of relationship knowledge, nature of human frailty, emotional processing and control over one's own actions would aid their understanding and help to realize that Daddy or Mommy are not "bad" people.<P>But to tell them and either outwardly foster ill regard towards the offender (or even to secretly wish it) or leave them with a sense of disrespect for the offender is not healthy for them.<P>If they are told - they should have it all explained to them...like how people make bad decisions and that doesn't turn them into people you don't care about anymore. It is not for them to punish and try to make someone else change to the way they believe it should be.<P>Acceptance knows no right or wrong. True acceptance would be to accept that the person made bad choices of character - which unfortunately affected others, but that did not make them "bad" or someone they can't love anymore.<P>On the contrary, the offender needs their love now more than ever. They can let them know they believe it is wrong - even ask why it happened if they choose. But to condemn without communication and love is just as wrong. How real was the love in the first place, that a person can be thrown out of their life because of a bad choice.<P>That's what H did (meaning threw us out of his life)....do we or the kids do the same? That makes things right?<P>What if a child does something wrong after this situation.....will they then be afraid that they'll be thrown out of the family also? Will they know that they are and will be loved "no matter what"? Do they know that bad can be changed to good and how to help others or themselves to figure out how?<P>These are the more pressing concerns as I see it........<P>I can't even find peace if I harbor ill will towards H.....I would not allow my kids to go through life without a peace and understanding about all of this. To live life with a bunch of whys in your head....with a lot of unresolved pain in your heart - well, that's not a full life and the kids deserve to be spared whatever they can.<P>It is all on what the true motivations of the parents are and where their own emotions are coming from.<P>BIG HUGS,<P>Sheba<BR>

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Nellie,<P>I really wish you would preface all your comments by the phrase "in my opinion". Because that is what it is.<P>I happen to disagree with most of what you advise here, but absolutely respect your right to have a different opinion. One thing that really bothers me is that your bitterness and anger are so totally overwhelming that there is no doubt it affects your children. You aren't even just angry at your exhusband, but at everyone who doesn't handle infidelity just as you have. That is unfair.<P>Whether or not we want to accept infidelity, it is here in the lives of most of us on this forum. To accept that as a fact is not to insinuate that it is okay, but to refuse to let it define our lives. I will never believe that it is right that my husband had an affair, but I must accept the fact that he did so that I can deal with it and move on with my life. I will not let one horrible wrong control the rest of my life or the lives of my children.<P>I will not "enlighten" my children so that they will hopefully turn against my husband and help me "punish" him. I will not lie in the pity pool crying "poor me" for the rest of my life.<P>You seem so proud that you have refused to "accept" your husband's decision to have an affair and leave your marriage. Answer me this, what have you accomplished by your refusal to "accept" his choices? Are you hoping to win some prize for the most bitter, longsuffering spouse alive? Are you hoping to completely destroy the idea of marriage and forgiveness in the lives of your children? Maybe by turning them completely off the idea you will spare them from your fate, is that the idea? <P>Nearly everyone alive faces some devastating event at some point in time. The death of a loved one, the illness and/or loss of a child, cancer, birth defect, miscarriage, etc., etc. And yes, probably over half of the marriages in America face infidelity. I wish that I could change all of these wrongs, but I can't. I personally have faced nearly everyone of the things I mentioned. But they have not beaten me, because instead of focusing on "poor me, it's not fair, I won't accept it, blah, blah, blah", I have done my best with what I am given. That is what most people do.<P>I am truly sorry that you are unhappy, but your situation is no worse than most everyone else has to deal with here. Except for one thing, and that is YOU. I realized a long time ago that you don't really come here for advice or even to help others. You come here to vent, and that's okay. We all do that sometimes.<P>But when you start advising people to do things that are so potentially damaging to the most innocent victims of adultery (the children), someone needs to challenge you a bit. In this case, you are very wrong. And I will not accept it.<P>Peppermint

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Nellie1 Offline OP
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Sheba,<P>I have talked to my kids many times about how you can love someone but disapprove of what they are doing. What I am unwilling to do is pretend that leaving ones family for another woman is in any way acceptable. <P>My daughter figured out that my H was having an affair the moment he left. She kept that knowledge to herself for six weeks, until he introduced the OW to the younger kids. How much better it would have been if it had all been out in the open from the very beginning. I didn't know why my H had suddenly left out of the blue, two days after we had offered on a house. The children did not understand why their father would suddenly not come home from work one day, leave without even saying goodbye, when they had no idea that anything was wrong. At one point my son was in tears because he didn't want his parents to keep secrets from him. Nothing made any sense - at least until the affair came to light. <P>peppermint,<P>One of the purposes of this board, or any advice/support board, is expressing opinions. It is therefore not necessary (in my opinion, if you insist) that we preface every opinion with the statement "in my opinion."<P>I do not believe that your situation has very much in common with mine. My H left and immediately moved in with another woman. Six weeks after he left, he introduced the children to her as a "friend from work." Shortly thereafter, he, not I, let them all know he was sleeping in her bed. And he told our oldest daughter that he had found her through a personal ad on the Internet that he had placed, looking for someone to talk to, while he was still living at home. What he apparently wanted to hide was not that he was having an affair, which he flaunted in front of them, but that there was anything wrong with having an affair. That is NOT acceptable. In my opinion, it is VERY, VERY wrong to encourage children to believe that adultery is in any way normal or acceptable. It is also wrong to let children believe that their parents "just didn't get along" or some such nonsense, and that that was the cause of divorce. It is wrong to encourage children to believe that it is ok to look for "someone to talk to" when you are still married. <P>What my husband has done was not just "one horrible wrong." It is a continuing pattern of cruelty toward me and toward the kids over a period of two years. The actual adultery has very little to do with it. His treatment of the kids, refusal to spend time with them when they beg him to, his repeated lying to them, broken promises, and constant criticism of them has severely damaged his relationship with them. You can not compare this with dealing with tragedies that are "acts of God" like birth defects, etc. <P>The children know that I love him and that I always will, although my older kids think I am nuts to do so. All the kids know that you can love someone and hate what they are doing. We have discussed that on numerous occasions.<P>I have to wonder - did your father withdraw from you, and, if so, did you think that wouldn't have happened if you continued to idolize him? <P>I believe that many people, including my H, are afraid that their fathers' love is conditional, that he will stop loving them if they antagonize him, don't admire him enough, misbehave, etc. And, unfortunately, in some cases that is correct. But conditional love between a parent and a child is worthless. <P> <p>[This message has been edited by Nellie1 (edited March 17, 2001).]

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I hear both of you. You both have good points.<P>I choose to tell my daughter when she asks me what happened to mommy and I. (which I would assume is when she's old enough to understand for herself)<P>I CHOOSE to let my 9yo be a happy, laughing 9yo. I CHOOSE not to scare her. She doesn't deserve any less. Just because my STBXW was unfathfull. Nope!! This is a burden I am to carry for a while. Not my 9yo. <P>Right now I have her this weekend. She is having a sleep over with another of her friends. I'm on the computer and I hear them in the living room laughing, and running around with the dog. Live is good. <P>When the time is right (and I'll know the time) we will talk. I dag'on for sure isn't now. <P>My .02$<BR>Tex

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Nellie1 Offline OP
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Agoodman,<P>When my H left us, my kids (except for the 3 year old) were anything but happy and carefree. They were confused, hurt, and totally miserable. Their father told them that he left because he didn't like me and he had made a mistake marrying me. My son took that to mean that his father regretted having the children. Once the affair was in the open, they were still terribly unhappy, but they were no longer confused. Most importantly, they have never given the slightest indication that they blame themselves. My teenage daughter pointed out something that I thought was very true - the children WILL blame somebody - either their mother, their father, or themselves. They will try to come up with some kind of explanation, some way to make sense of the situation - and that could well be blaming themselves. It is far better for there to be a "logical" explanation, no matter how horrible, than for them to have to have to invent one. <P>

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I understand your plight Nellie. The number of childern and the spread of their ages can't possibly help. It is different with mine as I only have one to deal with. However the problem is this isn't Logical its emotional, you can't deal with it as a logical problem. Try to discribe the color blue to a person blind from birth, You can't. <P>What your H did was not very manly, if you ask me. <P>Yes, they may blame somebody regardless of how it is brought up and sent into the open air. Isn't honesty and love the best policy? I don't know Nellie, I would just want to take the high road so I could look at it in the future and know <BR>I tryed my best to handle it correctly. As I think you are trying to handle it correctly in your situation now.. <P>Just be sure that you are doing the tit for tat thing..<P>{{{{{{{{{{Nellie1}}}}}}}}<P>Tex

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In reply to both Nellie and Peppermint....<BR>Infidelity is one thing,honesty is another and how one behaves with the kids is another.<BR>If adultery,which is wrong, was the "only" issue, Nellie, a few others and myself would probably not lurk or post here. It is wrong,but many many marriages do not disolve due to infidelity.<BR>Honesty and caring about the people one loves is paramount to marriages continuing.(IMO)<BR>Add to the mixture WS who truly are so damaged that they bring the kids into the mix, and offer so much contradictory and just plain wrong,but attractive behaviour, who should the adolescents beleive of their 2 parents? and then taken a step further.....to justify the WS choices or mistakes, the children are used to bolster the position"that your mother is losing the kids by being a parent and setting boundaries" <BR>Should I allow my kids to have no boundaries just to "like me" absolutely not....but at the same time, I cannot keep quiet when the advice they are also getting is so wrong in terms of the previous parental shared values.<P>So while adultery is wrong...and this we all have to accept....my bigger problem is the enabling and condoning of behaviour of my H which has led to huge problems in parenting 4 very confused and spoiled teens.<P>Nellie...I also agree....should one keep the kids in the dark about dangers out there? H#LL NO...even if the danger is the choices the other parent offers to enable the kids to "like him more' One can parent.......andone can be a friend...but one cannot always be both and this has been my families problem.

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Nellie1 Offline OP
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Agoodman,<P>Obviously in my case, my H's actions ensured that the affair would not remain a secret. Even if he somehow thought the little kids would never figure out that the woman he was suddenly living with shortly after he left hadn't appeared in his life until after he left, he should have known that it would be immediately obvious to the teenagers. The little ones have not been told that he was "dating" her before he left, but they (except for the youngest, who is too young to understand at all) do know that it is wrong for him to have been living with her while married to me. It has not affected their love for him.<P>willbok,<P>I agree that teenagers should be warned about the dangers out there. Just as you should warn them about date rape, I think it is the parent's responsibility to let them know that when their boyfriend/girlfriend/spouse suddenly becomes secretive and filled with inexplicable anger, it is almost certainly because they are seeing someone else. If my kids are ever in that situation, I would hate to see them blame themselves and beat themselves up wondering what they have done wrong to make their SO so angry at them.

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Hi Nellie,<P>Did you start this thread as a spin off to mine??? [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com] <P>I agree that I want more than anything that my kids (and to some extent Mia's kid) be told the truth about the relationship between my ex & Mia. From reading all of these responses, it seems that perhaps you and I are the only ones that feel still incredibly hurt by our h's leaving that we are not "getting over it".<P>My situation is absolutely nothing like yours at all. My ex did the counseling thing with me. He did end his affair with Mia (or so he says) while trying to bring out the things he wanted inour marriage through counseling. And when it was clear (To HIM) that he was still unhappy and felt the marriage was DEAD, he filed for a divorce. It was not uncontested by me, but, in my state divorce is no fault. So here I am, a newly divorce woman, after two years of trying to fix my marriage and he is now with the original OW in a very committed relationship.<P>And I also agree with the comments that Wilbok has written about infidelity being between the adults involved and not the kids. In my case, Mia is a good parent to her son, and even though I hate to admit this, she's not been unkind at all to my children. My ex tells me that she has set rules for her child that seem very similar to how I parented my kids when they were that age. So I can't in good faith condemn her as a parent. The only thing I can hate her for is having an affair with my H, then subsequently ending up with him again. <P>Yes, as Sheryl (new_beginning) says, life isn't fair, is it?<P>

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Peppermint,<P>"Are you hoping to completely destroy the idea of marriage and forgiveness in the lives of your children?"<P>Nellie's ex did and is continuing to do that. Divorce rates are appalling in this country. If I had children (and thank God I don't these days)I would teach them to be self-sufficient. I would teach them never to allow your spouse to be your sole source of support emotionally, financially or almost anything else. That is not bitter. It is realistic. I suspect the reason why Nellie hasn't "gotten over" this to some other's satisfaction does not have a whole lot to do with her ex. It has everything to do with the fact that she has been left to friggin fend for herself with 6 kids. Her ex and his family and friends were probably the only family she ever had. Not to mention spending 25 yrs with someone.<P>Imagine spending that much time with someone. Investing every day of your life with them, their friends, their family, and then, one day...every one of them is gone forever. Everything you invested your life in is completely history. At least if they had died in some terrible tragedy, people wouldn't be saying crap like what you said about getting over it. Not only that, she's had to put up with his rejection and anger, and hurting her children. Everything in her life has been ripped away and dumped in a trash can...and yet, people still have the nerve to say she should feel different. She's still disrespected every day by this person. It is not JUST about getting over some stupid man.<P>I suspect the reason why she is still so angry sometimes is because people tell her she is not supposed to be. She (like me) comes here and gets advice about how wonderful divorced life is supposed to be with their "new man" or "new woman".<P>I hope she does get angry. I hope she does get good and flaming mad. She has every right to be. I'm convinced she will one day get it all out of her system.<P>In the meantime...<BR>Nellie, <BR>This place sucks. Noone here has a clue what you are going through. Not me, not anyone. You are allowed to feel any way you need to feel. What you don't need is a guilt trip because you are upset about what has happened to your family. You don't need people telling you your life will be all peachy keen once you find a way to forget about 25 YEARS of your life!!

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I have a hard time with the acceptance thing too. I know I have no other choice but to accept it, but that's the problem. Major decisions about my life and it's future were decided with no input from me. It's a very violating feeling.<BR> My STBX knew how I felt about marriage, kmew that I put it off for so long because I never wanted to go through a divorce, knew how seriously I took those vows and yet he had no problem taking them when he truly didn't mean them(his A started a month after we were married) He took something that was very sacred to me and turned it into a joke. He took ten years of trust, love and good times and just tossed them aside like garbage because as he put it "I want to see what else is out there." Complete selfishness and the fact that he refuses to see it that way(he feels if he throws enough money at me that makes it all better)makes me even crazier.<BR> I'm tired of being told I shouldn't be angry and that I should just reach some sort of "Zen-like" acceptance of all this. I just can't right now. I've had so many things forced on me in the past few months and so many hateful and nasty things said to me for no greater crime then loving him and wanting to save our marriage. Inexcusiable and not something anyone should accept gracefully. I'm letting go only because I see that this man has nothing of value to give to me anymore, but I will never accept that this was right or for the best.

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I have not been around for awhile and I don't know all of your stories. But I really agree with a couple of things I have read in this thread.<BR>First, this is a place we can VENT. I love being able to come here and have the freedom to be WRONG and to make mistakes. My ex had me doing backflips trying to always be RIGHT. Being accepted despite my errors in judgement is a good thing.<BR>Second, it is not good to build your life around one other person. This is not because divorce is so common these days. It is because it is not healthy. I know. I did it. I built my life around my ex and I would have been stuck with him or dead (from suicide, no joke) if I did not happen to get married older and have a life BEFORE him which I could go back to. No one person can meet all of your needs -- although your most pressing needs and certain needs should only be met by the one you love most. I feel so much better these days that I am my own person. I hope to be smart enough not to make the same mistakes again. And I will teach my kids whatever I have learned -- so that they can make their own mistakes too and not repeat mine. Cuz my kids will make mistakes. I can't stop that.<BR>As far as the kids, I think we tell them what they are ready to hear. My kids blame both their dad and me. They don't know everything, or even much for that matter. I think they know more than I have told them tho. They are smart. They already know dad lets them down. I don't have to tell them so! I frequently ask if there is anything they want to know, but I don't get into bad-mouthing their father. As wrong as an affair is, there is a reason why he wanted someone else -- my husbands needs were not being met. I am not condoning it. But I don't want to pretend that it was all his fault for running away. He says 60%(his) 40% (mine) and I say more like 80/20. Most recently, the kids asked why daddy was with the woman he is presently with (he changes every couple of months) when he was not divorced yet. They were worried that he would get in trouble with the law. I just told them that Daddy will not get in trouble with a judge, but that the Bible tells us that we should not date while we are married. Since Daddy does not live by the Bible, he has a different standard. But I have to wait. They said it was not fair. That daddy should sign the papers so that mommy can date too. Pretty smart huh? <BR>Of course, I want my kids to love their dad despite his mistakes. Isn't that what I want for myself? And he loves them as best as he can. They know the difference between the one who keeps her word and the one who does not.

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Tired Lady,<P>Yes, this thread was sort of a spin off on yours. <P>You know, it really doesn't matter if the OW is "kind" to the kids, because she has already shown that she doesn't care about them by breaking up their family. If I remember correctly, Mia once stated that she would not get back together with your H, even if your marriage should end. There is no way that OP's can pretend that they are good role models for the children. Of course, in my case, the OW has gone even farther, by prohibiting my H from having his children visit together, or stay longer than about 4 hours once a month.<P>TheStudent,<P>Thank you so much. Your assessment is virtually 100% accurate. Among other things, my H has deprived his children of all the relatives on his side, including their grandfather, because he seems to have no interest in taking them to visit, in spite of the fact that the grandfather likely won't be around all that much longer. I've been tempted to take them all to visit myself, though I don't know whether we'd be welcome. I do have a sister - but that and a niece is about all the close family I have. Actually, most of our mutual friends were more mine than my H's, except for one good friend of his who inexplicably seemed to end their friendship of many years shortly before the affair started.<P>You are right. I shouldn't have to be defending myself here. No one has the right to tell me how I should feel or that I should just forget about my entire adult life.<P>Nduli2,<P>Anger is not a bad thing. Wrong is far too easily accepted in this society. As a former minister of ours once quoted, "You should not be so open minded that your brains fall out."<P>NoraP,<P>Unfortunately, this board is not always a place where you can vent without having everyone jump down your throat. I can't say that I have found any other board that is better, because many of them are completely of the "dump the jerk" mindset.

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Hi Nellie,<P> I was one of those children. My father was a cheat. My parents divorced when I was about 7. I didn't see my dad that much when growing up. He did not like me. He brought a woman to our home, when my mom was at work!!! I told my mom. He never liked me after that. We were not close at all. He was also an alcoholic. But I didn't think that much about him being a cheat and how much it hurt my mom. UNTIL it happened to me. I am 48 now. So that is how younger children think about infidelity.<P>------------------<BR>Deb

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<B>Nellie</B>...<P>You have standards of objective morals that are so refreshing...<BR>I'm proud to know you.<P> [Linked Image from marriagebuilders.com]<P>Jim<p>[This message has been edited by NSR (edited March 18, 2001).]

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TS,<P>First of all, I have NEVER said that anyone should just "get over" being betrayed or divorced. I have NEVER insinuated that anyone should approve of infidelity or walking away from their family. And I HAVE spent over 25 years with a man who nearly destroyed my life by having an affair. Also, I DO have children, and have had to deal with the temptation of badmouthing my husband to them so that I could look like the "good parent" in comparison.<P>But I have also been in the position of the child. My father had an affair when my mother was pregnant with my younger brother, and the OW became pregnant too. And I know how devastating it is to be told about things that you really don't understand. Two days ago, I watched my 23 year old son cry and say that he just wished he didn't know about his father's affair so that he could just go back to having and loving his dad again.<P>I am delighted to have children. I know that the man who fathered them will always be a part of their lives. And I know from firsthand experience that to listen to criticism of a parent is to realize that all those terrible things must be true about yourself since you are 50% the child of that person who DID those horrible things.<P>You, better than many people here, should know that even adulterers are not 100% bad. Even Nellie's husband, as horrible as his actions have been, could still be a good father to his children if he wanted to be.<P>You are right that his actions are showing his children many things that are completely wrong. The choices he has made that Nellie describes regarding his children are bound to be devastating to the lives of his sons and daughters. I make no excuses for him or anyone else who acts this way. I have little respect or patience for anyone who neglects their children or mistreats them in any way.<P>Certainly, there is value in teaching children to be independent and self reliant, and of warning them of potential dangers. But there is also harm in letting them believe that the best way to deal with hurt and disappointment is to allow bitterness and anger to take over your life, and that the best way to avoid it is to refuse to let anyone close to you.<P>I also agree that parents need to be honest with their children, but given the emotional nature of infidelity, it is hard to tell where honest facts end and bias begins. It is one thing to tell your children that their father left for another woman. It is completely another thing to tell them that most men do the same thing and that no matter how perfect you are as a wife you can't trust your husband because he will do the same thing to you.<P>Nellie stated earlier that my situation has little to do with hers. I assume she meant that because my husband and I did not divorce, I can't possibly have any knowledge of the situation. But I do have knowledge, both as a betrayed wife and perhaps more importantly, as the child of a betraying parent.<P>I admire the fact that you are an educated, self-reliant woman, but you are not the only one here. I have been on this site for quite a while, long enough to know that you have an opinion on virtually every subject, whether or not you have any personal knowledge of it. Why do you seem to think it is wrong for me to have a differing opinion on a subject that I DO have personal knowledge of?<P>If I remember correctly, you have been married once or twice, have no children, were the unfaithful partner in your last marriage, and have no desire for another relationship at this time. Yet you seem to consider yourself the ultimate authority on child rearing, how betrayed spouses should feel, how all women should behave, and how much Marriage Builders "suck". That's quite a lot for one person to take on.<P>I responded to Nellie's post because it IS something that I KNOW about and something that I feel passionately about. I stick to what I KNOW, and this is a subject I know much more about than I wish I did. I have never responded to one of your posts, probably because your situation is so diametrically opposed to mine.<P>As far as I'm concerned, this subject can be closed. Nellie neither needs nor wants my advice or perspective, and that's okay. Maybe you can give her one she likes better.<P>Peppermint

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Deb,<P>I am sorry. I will never understand how a parent can reject a child under any circumstances. <P>Jim,<P>Thank you. You have always been one of the people on this board I admired the most. I am proud to know you as well.

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Nellie,<BR>I am still so darn angry.......do not think I am not. I do not enjoy what H did in terms of the affair itself. That was as devastating as I thought it could get. WRONG.<BR>The fact that OW is a ####### is enough that I will not call his home, unless over a life or death issue re a kid (I call his office otherwise) <BR>What I am so more angry and what nearly broke me was the kids and his behaviour and enablement of their adolescent junk as they enabled his new behaviour and life style. Sort of birds of a feather.<BR>This I will never forget or forgive him for....this was not a "bad decision" or mistake as some refer to infidelity. This was a new person who I would not want anywhere near my impressionable adolescent children....but I had no choice as he IS their father. The OW is worse than he is in terms of parenting , values. THIS has been my biggest struggle and continues to be.THIS is what has made my life these past 2 years since separation living hell. The fact that the kids have accepted OW is a nightmare due to the miserable influence she has especially on the younger 2. The fact that H left 17 y o alone (son moved out 2 weeks ago as I had boundaries and consequences and I was not "nice" to impose them when he messed up) while he took d, ### and her d away for a weekonce he moved in last week is irresponsible especially as son then had a party to beat all parties etc!!!!!<BR>Son NEVER did this in my home as 1)he knew there would be H@LL to pay 2)I never left him alone with the opportunity to do what he did at father's home.<P>So I am hopping mad that father cannot parent this kid and is as irresponsible as the kid himself.<P>My other 3 are also messes. .....<P>And this ned not have been had H <BR>a)not persued his affair and hedonistic lifestyle<BR>b)parented co-operatively...leaving kid in my care as I am better able to deal with it all and CHOOSE to as oppose to ignore everything...that is my job as a parent<BR>c)vanished off the face of the earth with &^R<P>So while I am better off without H driving me insane on a daily basis, I would never have chosen this. I am no longer angry at the affair per se,but all the other insane stuff he continues to do as my children's father,...and the influence of OW in my children's lives. The fact that his aim in life is to destruoy me is very painful ,but will not happen<P>

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Nellie,<P>I agree with NSR I admire your standards.<P>I also think teenagers especially need to know the truth. If they have been raised that adultery is wrong they will find it objectable if not the impact might not be as great.<P>At the disclosure of my H's A: I stated that our OS had to be told. Of course my H strongly disagreed. I thought, still do that OS finding out was just one of the consequences of the A. If my H had been willing to do a no contact letter, quit his job, etc. I could have gone along with him not knowing. My H had to tell our son, both were devastated. Here it is 19 mths later, at least look we as if we are trying, my son & his dad relationship has not changed, my H has worked very hard to keep that relationship.<P>After the dust had settle so to speak, my son & I talked. I told him that his dad had made some bad decisions, that I had not been the wife he needed, my son's response well, was dad doing things that you needed, and you didn't have an affair. I ask son if he wished he didn't know, of course his answer was yes, but he said if ya'll had just said you were having problems & dad left I would have thought their was someone else. <P>The A is rarely ever mentioned between my son & I unless actions of my H have made it necessary. When I delayed our move to Singapore, I let son know it wasn't something he had done, that if we didn't come at all it was because of the OW. <P>If my son ever asks my if his dad still is involved with her, I will tell him what I think & to ask his dad, but I don't think he will.<P>If/when my H & I divorce, my sons will know why & that the OW was key in our being unable to work things out. I don't want them to like her or her family (who have encouraged her pursuit of my H) but I will tell them they have to treat her with respect if she is their d's wife.<P>2 yrs ago my H planned on leaving me, divorcing me without me knowing their was someone else. He then planned on slowly introducing the OW to them, so they wouldn't be able to hate her for being apart of our break up. It didn't work that way. Our sons know that their dad loves them & will always love them; I will never tell anything else. But for now there is still a glimmer of hope that we can still save our family. <P>Didn’t mean to write a book on this but I do strongly think that you can not lie to teenagers, just don’t tell them in a hurtful way, in our case our sons know dad loves them. <BR>

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