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Hi everyone, I don't really have anyone to talk to about this so here goes. I am married and have been for 11 years. we have two young children together and he's raised my oldest, from a previous relationship, for the last 14 years. we have had our share of problems through the years. Dealing with addiction and my infidelity in the past. He has cheated before me but since we werent married at that time, he says it doesn't count. For the past 3+ years, I have been trying to be the best wife, mother and person that I can for him as he says he still doesn't forgive me for the 3 one-night stands I had when I was out of my head drunk. Which I feel awful about and been begging for forgiveness and trying to make up for for 3 years. and have not drank since.

So last June (2015) I found out he was seeing another woman. caught him basically red-handed when he said he was kayaking but I tracked his phone and went to where he was at her house. So he admits he's been "talking and seeing" her for a couple weeks. He said no sex. Then I find out he was seeing her a lot more and longer than he said. (Just found out today its actually been going on for over 1 year) So anyway after I caught him, we fought and fought but I knew in my heart I would forgive him. So about 4 days after I caught him, he goes out one night, not telling me where he's going or who with (turned his phone off) and comes home the next morning and admits he spent the night with his ex-girlfriend, from high school, thats the one he cheated on me with at the beginning of our relationship. So he tells me he was with her all night (just talking!!) and he has decided to leave me and our kids. I panic and become desperate and beg him to stay at least for our kids and we'll try counseling. That was 5 months ago. He still denies physically cheating at all. He says its not as bad as what I did. He hasn't tried anything thats been suggested of him in therapy. He STILL does not know if he wants to be married to me anymore. Meanwhile I'm trying soooo hard to be the perfect wife and waiting for him to make his decision. Basically it seems like he's waiting for me to give up so he's not the "bad guy". I don't know wtf to do anymore. He doesn't talk to me, no date nights, if we have sex its because I initiate it. It seems like he's checked out of our marriage, he's distanced himself from our kids.

I have been a stay-at-home mom for 10 years. Nothing is in my name, I have no money. I don't have friends anymore because he thought I would cheat again if I went out with friends. His father is a multi-millionaire and has already told him he would pay for the best lawyer for him.

i feel so stuck and helpless and scared. I just don't know what to do. Keep waiting, trying to win him back, give up? My kids would be devestated I think.

sorry this is so long. If anyone has any advice, been through something like this, or has anything to say, please do. Thanks for listening.

And If anyone wants to be judgemental, whatever, there's nothing you can say that I already haven't told myself.

grateful gal

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First of all, I'm sorry you are going through this. I have been in a somewhat similar situation and know how unhappy it makes you.

My best advice is to be a realist and not a romantic. You can hope for the best, but you really need to start preparing for the worst. If you are not able to get along without him, you need to change that.

Time to put yourself first, ahead of the ailing relationship. Get a job, reconnect with friends, and have your own identity. He should only respect you more if he sees you can stand on your own. This is important whether you stay together or not.

Please PM me if you want someone to talk to. Feeling isolated does not help, nor does being embarrassed, when so many of us have been in your shoes.

 

 

 

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GG - I have only two words for you - GET OUT!  I don't want to seem cold or unfeeling, but those types NEVER change - voice of experience here!  It hurts like hell of course, but you will be better off in the long run.  Your children will never come to you years from now and say "thank you for ruining your life for us" - so do not stay because of them.  They will get over it.  Are there parents, or aunts or uncles you can stay with for a while?  Friends can be very forgiving - try it.

I went to hell and back with my cheater - he made me feel like I was insane and imagining everything.  He finally told me about the "other woman" - I knew who she was long ago - his BEST FRIEND'S WIFE!  Talk about no class.  I told him to hit the bricks - we got divorced, they got married, she took every dime he had and left him for someone else!  Karma is a bitch!  Now he is living with some skank that beats him up!  Neither one of them have a penny to their names.  Too bad!  Know what?  I am sooo much the better person for it.  He's a loser, and so is your husband.  Get out - don't even think of "winning him back" - honey, he is NOT worth your time.  Do you think he is sitting somewhere asking strangers for advice?  No!  He's probably getting his knob polished - since that's all that type wants anyway.   And this is not some recently divorced bitter person talking - that was almost ten years ago.  I am still a little angry with myself for letting it go on for so long - just like you are doing.  Trust me, do not waste another month, week, day - tell him to GO and be with someone else - you have better things to do with your life.  There is a saying that goes something like this "men are not worth crying over, and the one who is - won't make you cry"

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I'm a bloke, but I agree, let him go. You are worth more than that. Be YOU! 

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Thank you so much everyone, this is the first time I have heard any advice that is looking out for my happiness. My mom, she seriously told me to make his favorite dinners and don't start fights. I think I know in my heart what I need to do. I just never ever thought this is how we would end up. I know everyone probably says that but it feels true to me. and I never thought it would hurt this bad. 

I have been through heartbreak and I'm sure someday I would be ok. My oldest daughter too, I know she would be too. I worry so much though for my 10 and 6 year olds. I used to say it was so bad to stay together for the kids but now I understand why people do. I am looking for a job and I did open my own bank accounts. I never want to feel as helpless as I felt that day he said he was leaving. 

I wish I could figure out how to not care so much. That's just tearing me up inside. I try to tell myself things like, would I want my girls to be treated like this by a man when they are older? I don't want to set a bad example.

i guess I have to learn to toughen up like I used to be. It really helps when I hear the kind of support that you all just gave me. Thank you so much.

? grateful gal

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I'm sure mom means well and it's just how her generation thought, but today we have choices. It's going to hurt, there's no getting around it, only through it. It's awful, but it's temporary.

I was with this ex 12 years when he got back on drugs and went apeshit crazy. I endured a whole year of it for the same reasons as you, more or less. Lost my home, job, credit, and half of my belongings. Talk about down and out. Oh, and terrible health problems as well.

Today life is grand and what's his name is a distant memory. Yours will be great too. I don't know anyone who leaves a bad relationship and wishes they were back in it a year down the road.

Good luck with your job hunting. Every step towards independence will make you feel better. If you have any relatives that can help, let them. We are here for moral support too.

 

 

 

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Gratefulgal: a reverse to your situation

I too am going through a 12yr break up.

Mainly my fault although now my ego and essentially I am hurt, I am finding it hard that I believe she has moved on and wants nothing to do with me. I havent been the best of boyfriends I admit but christ I didnt see this one coming. I have cheated in the past but that wasnt the reason why we split.

We split for many reasons but essentially she wasnt happy and neither was I.

A lot of rage and anger at the moment.

 

I can only wish you the best OP but I wouldnt fight for him being totally honest.

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Sorry @trinity. Even if it wasn't a happy relationship, 12 years is a long time and a big adjustment to life without that person. I hope the hurt and anger won't last long and your next chapter in life leads to happiness.

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@GratefulGal So sorry you're going through such a difficult time.  I am a firm believer in this: "Don't make someone a priority in your life when you're just an option in theirs".  As 2earls said ~ yes, it will hurt but you will get through it.  Please don't fool yourself into thinking he will change.  If he can cheat on you and knows you will still 'take him back' ~ there's really no reason for him to change.  We've all made mistakes in our lives but, for him to use your past mistakes for his cheating is not only wrong but so degrading to you.  I wish you and your children all the best.

~Vapor

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Just browsing the forums out of pure boredom. And I'm wondering where things have gone from here with you and your husband? I'm kind of in the same boat, but not together 11 years and no actual cheating, as in sex, that I've found out. Just a bunch of lies instead so who knows. But I do hope you've had somewhat of a positive outcome? 

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Hi GG!

Here is the reason he can't forgive you. MEN (and I am one) have such a hard time forgiving infidelity because it is such an affront to our masculinity. Deep down he blames himself. IF he was "more" you would not have cheated. Infidelity is the "mirror" in which men see all of their emotional failings. The majority of women cheat due to her significant other being emotionally bankrupt. Not for pure physical reasons (as most men do) generally speaking.

“We think you'll find that every woman in her heart of hearts longs for three things: to be romanced, to play an irreplaceable role in a great adventure, and to unveil her own beauty. That's what makes a woman come alive.” - John Eldredge

 

Women are always asking this question " Do you see me? am I beautiful? Do you take delight in me?" They start with dad and continue to ask these questions internally through out life. The man who can answer honestly YES to all three captures her heart for all eternity.

 

GG why did you cheat on him? Not condemning but you must understand for you first. Then he must understand. This is the only road to restoration. Once he understands he has a chance to do things differently thus assuring himself you wont do it again. The only way this is solved for him is if he believes he is the one that fixes this. Not you. He does not believe you can...and he is right.

You can leave...but you will have a wound that may not heal for the rest of your life. Don't try to be "sweet" enough or try to hard. Just explain...the truth as hard as it might be. It's what he needs.

 

His cheating on you is an empty attempt to regain his masculinity. But it will never work. He can only find something where he lost it. That's with you. Not another women.

 

If I could say anything to your husband it would be this: "Girls cry first and boys cry last." ALWAYS. When she has cried her last tear she will leave, something you never thought she would do and then your tears start. Then it's too late. Cry together, hurt together, heal together.

 

I have destroyed two marriages because I was unwilling to forgive. There is strength in forgiveness, but it requires one to be emotionally intelligent. That's way most women are much better at it then men.

 

 

oh and BTW, I'm not trying to pretend I know anything other than my own fuck ups. And I am the "master fuck up". Should be my name around here. Both of my wives were wonderful people, perfect no...but the truth is it was me. I have taken the past year to look deep inside. Most of what I saw I did not like...but there was a small portion of my heart that had some merit. So I've decided to water that section and nurture the good...let go of my past...live today with heart open wide...risk it all to get a chance to do it the right way...maybe I will get a 3rd chance at love...if I do...I will be ready this time.

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Hi GG, I've just read your post; it's a few months old, but I just wanted to let you know you aren't alone. I've been in a similar situation, and I know how hard it can be. I sincerely hope you've found your path, and a piece of mind. I wish you happiness and love! 

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On 18/01/2016 at 5:16 PM, UberSmash said:

Hi GG!

Here is the reason he can't forgive you. MEN (and I am one) have such a hard time forgiving infidelity because it is such an affront to our masculinity. Deep down he blames himself. IF he was "more" you would not have cheated. Infidelity is the "mirror" in which men see all of their emotional failings. The majority of women cheat due to her significant other being emotionally bankrupt. Not for pure physical reasons (as most men do) generally speaking.

“We think you'll find that every woman in her heart of hearts longs for three things: to be romanced, to play an irreplaceable role in a great adventure, and to unveil her own beauty. That's what makes a woman come alive.” - John Eldredge

 

Women are always asking this question " Do you see me? am I beautiful? Do you take delight in me?" They start with dad and continue to ask these questions internally through out life. The man who can answer honestly YES to all three captures her heart for all eternity.

 

GG why did you cheat on him? Not condemning but you must understand for you first. Then he must understand. This is the only road to restoration. Once he understands he has a chance to do things differently thus assuring himself you wont do it again. The only way this is solved for him is if he believes he is the one that fixes this. Not you. He does not believe you can...and he is right.

You can leave...but you will have a wound that may not heal for the rest of your life. Don't try to be "sweet" enough or try to hard. Just explain...the truth as hard as it might be. It's what he needs.

 

His cheating on you is an empty attempt to regain his masculinity. But it will never work. He can only find something where he lost it. That's with you. Not another women.

 

If I could say anything to your husband it would be this: "Girls cry first and boys cry last." ALWAYS. When she has cried her last tear she will leave, something you never thought she would do and then your tears start. Then it's too late. Cry together, hurt together, heal together.

 

I have destroyed two marriages because I was unwilling to forgive. There is strength in forgiveness, but it requires one to be emotionally intelligent. That's way most women are much better at it then men.

 

 

oh and BTW, I'm not trying to pretend I know anything other than my own fuck ups. And I am the "master fuck up". Should be my name around here. Both of my wives were wonderful people, perfect no...but the truth is it was me. I have taken the past year to look deep inside. Most of what I saw I did not like...but there was a small portion of my heart that had some merit. So I've decided to water that section and nurture the good...let go of my past...live today with heart open wide...risk it all to get a chance to do it the right way...maybe I will get a 3rd chance at love...if I do...I will be ready this time.

 

This is a very good post.
I would go a step further to the infidelity issue, with men the reason it is harder to forgive is ego.

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GG,

Not sure if you still come here or not, but I hope I can offer you some helpful advice and a bit of comfort. Also, I'd like to share my experiences in this area with you too. First off, I'm not a therapist (yet), but do have 5 years of psychology training under my belt- set to begin my Master's this fall. So, I may as well be a therapist. ;) Cheating is a complicated issue. When one person cheats, it's very difficult to balance out the scales again. One person walks on eggshells while the other person perpetually rewards (or punishes) their efforts. When both people cheat- and he in fact did cheat on you as well- it's damn near impossible to regain balance and any semblance of a healthy relationship. 

Understandably, alcohol doesn't make things any better, but if somebody was drunk when they cheated, it's best if the alcohol involvement is minimized- because the fact is, alcohol only magnifies what's already there inside of us. It's best to focus on the apology, and not the reason/s for cheating. Once you've apologized, it's up to the other person to accept it, and that involves not punishing you for it thereafter. If that happens, the blame shifts from you to him/her.  It's not o.k. to hold a grudge and continually punish, any more than it's o.k. to cheat to begin with. 

I think at this stage of things, it's best to part ways: There's just too much damage. All of these negative behaviors are going to be passed on to the kids by proxy, unfortunately, if you (and he) continue living in the same household. Children mimic what they see, hear, and notice. They're very perceptive! They know when things are bad, and it's not fair to keep them involved in such an unhealthy relationship, because they're very much "in the mix" too. 

You might think you "need" your husband, but the truth of the matter is, you don't. And he doesn't need you either, and he's showing you that. You were alive and surviving long before you met him. You're much stronger inside than you realize. I too was trapped in a bad marriage and our children were suffering. I ended up divorcing him, and my mother convinced me to remarry him "for the children's sake". Yep...so I did. (Sigh.) Needless to say, we divorced again, after I gave my X 30 days to move out of the house, and out of my life. It was hard to do that, but I knew that we (he and I) were destroying our children without even knowing it. When you're saturated in pain and negativity, it's not easy to see things "how they really are". But believe me, at this stage of the game, things are really bad. 

Acknowledge that your husband is cheating on you, and acknowledge that you agree that you don't deserve to be treated this way. I understand that you've both cheated in the past, but I'm speaking about the present. Your husband has already checked out. He won't be honest with you and will continue to cheat on you and lie about it; just as he's been doing. You can't change or save him, but you can save yourself and your children. 

My story ended well. I met a wonderful man after being alone for a while, and we've been together for 10 years now. He's my soul mate and the love of my life. :) I would have never met him if I would have stayed in my destructive marriage. No doubt, there's a wonderful somebody out there for you too- if you do choose to seek a new, healthier life. But please, love yourself enough to "date only you" for a while. Get to know yourself! Spend time with yourself and refuse to see anyone for at least a year. That way, when you do meet your soul mate, you'll be giving him the best of who you are as a strong, honest woman, and not another man's damaged remains. 

I hope you're able to move on from this mess. If you and he do choose to stay together, please, set your bar high and participate in couple's counseling. If he refuses, seek individual counseling and share all of this with your therapist. It's good to have an outside perspective of a stranger who owes neither of you allegiance. 

And one last bit of parting advice: if you and he are going to dispute or argue, set up a few rules that neither of you are allowed to break. My guy and I have the following rules when we're feeling heated/angry:

1.) You're only allowed to whisper. (Have you ever had a screaming match while trying to whisper? It's very hard to do. But that's the point. ;0)
2.) No inflammatory words allowed.
3.) The words "you" and "I" are not allowed either. 
4.) No matter who's wrong, both of you apologize.

# 3 might seem a bit extreme, but that's because when a person is angry, it's standard to paint horns on the other person and a halo on ourselves. We blame the other person unfairly when we're talking about ourselves, and we'll exaggerate our own innocence (and their guilt) when comparing ourselves to him/her. For this reason, "you" and "I" aren't allowed when we're feeling particularly hurt or angry. 

When he and I stick to these 3 basic rules, and for the most part, we do, we don't have much to say; except for "I'm sorry." And this is why we're still together, faithful to each other, and very much in love after 10 years.

Hope things get better for you, and I wish you all the best,

-O

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wow, amazing stuff @Ophelia and @UberSmash.  I'll just add a twist, that my wife was overweight for years, +100 lbs or so.  We had young kids and she started hitting the gym afterwards, and lost those 100 lbs.  Now to quote US

On 1/17/2016 at 0:16 PM, UberSmash said:

The majority of women cheat due to her significant other being emotionally bankrupt.

well I admit this is what happened.  she was super huge and I lost attraction to her.  Once she lost the weight the sex became AMAZING, but at the same time she was getting her emotional needs met by another man 2000 miles away.  Once she wanted to make this a local/physical relationship (long story short, she's with another man about 30 miles away now) I was like NO F-ING WAY!  Welp, too late now, divorce is proceeding.  

GratefulGal, I wish the best for you.  I agree with Miss Delivery and others, you need to GET OUT.  Whatever state you're in must have services available for women in vulnerable positions as you are.  Please, search those out.  Use the google machine, it's a great tool.  Sorry if that last part was too obvious, just trying to help.

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