TFC, listen to Mulan. If you want to break up your husband's affair, expose it to anyone and everyone who can reasonably be expected to be able to put pressure on the adultery. That doesn’t mean you call your WH’s third cousin over in München, Germany, and you don’t call the local newspaper. I can’t figure out if the OW is a co-worker or not, but if she is, her boss and your WH’s boss are definite targets for exposure.

The boss’s ability to put pressure on the adultery is obvious. I don’t know how large your WH’s firm is. If large enough, they probably have a Human Resources (HR) Director (AKA, Personnel Department). A formal letter, email, phone call can all be effective. The best way, of course, is to go in to the director and let him/her know what is going on. Bear in mind, they’ll be interested because it may violate a policy they have, and also because you can show the HR Director your WH has been using company time and resources to conduct his adultery.

You’ll need to be up front about your adultery. It’ll be painful, but necessary in order to establish your bona fides.

Other targets for exposure include professional associates, professional societies, and organizations your WH or OW belong to, pastors/priests, his family, yours, friends, etc. Don’t worry about how they feel toward your own adultery—people understand two wrongs don’t make a right…and you can even make that point.

Now, understand this, TFC. When you do the exposure, your WH is going to be absolutely furious. “Livid” isn’t going to be the half of it. Other wayward spouses have raged for a week and more about how horrible a thing the betrayed spouse has done. Some have left the marital home for a time, swearing they “were” going to work on the marriage, but now…huh uh…now you’ve REALLY blown it. Etc., etc., etc. It’s happened before, it’ll happen again.

The thing is, it’s all bombast…venting. It’s empty and the wayward one can’t maintain it. It’s really hard work being mad all the time. When the moment passes (even if that moment is a week long), the balloon deflates and the WS must begin facing the consequences of their choices. People get over being mad, TFC. Those of us who’ve been out here for a long while have experienced that anger personally, and have also seen it in other MB clients over, and over, and over again. Don’t worry about “livid.”

Your realization you’ll come out of this sane and whole is an important part of your growth and a crucial beginning for your fight to recover your marriage. Now...as you seem to realize...you can’t let that realization carry you too far down that road. Being self-reliant and confident is good; letting yourself get too emotionally detached from your WH isn’t. Enough said.

Okay, TFC. I think you’re beginning to see how much work you have in front of you to salvage your marriage. It’s going to be tough, but it can be done. Again, I strongly urge you to find a well experienced, pro-marriage couples counselor if Steve Harley isn’t an option.

Hang in there.