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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am the ideal father and family man. If I am not working providing for my family, I am spending time with them. Problem I am facing is my wife of 20 years recently had an EA with a coworker. Her reason is that we started to drift apart mainly due to my obligations with my teenage daughters, which is where all my free time was devoted to. Is is not that I ignored her, still told her I loved her, complimented her, flowers on occasion for no special reason, cards etc. Our intamacy has been strained mainly do to my exhaustion at the end of long days. I understand I may have hurt my wife by not providing as a husband over the past couple years due to my many commitments with them. However, I do not understand her way of thinking and why she chose to have an A. She told me that we were drifting apart but I chose not to believe her and said we will soon have more time to spend together as our daughters soon will not need us as much.
My life is my wife and family and am having a very difficult time with this whirlwind I am living in.
Can anyone comment or past experiences? Have I been a bad husband to deserve this? I just don't understand it all!!
 

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How long did this period of time last?

During this time how many hours week did you spend doing one-on-one, date like things with you wife, just the two of you... things like talking (not about your children, finances, etc), going for walks together, going to dinner (watching TV and movies do not count).
 

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This is why people say to put your spouse before your children. Its nice that your an attentive father but its very important to be an attentive husband as well. Do you compliment in passing or do you go up to her, stroke her face and tell her how beautiful she is?

Dont get me wrong... I do feel she was very wrong for making the choice to have an affair and she needs to own up to that instead of trying to blameshift it all on you. Of course she may feel like the "on occasion" and the compliments seem like they are nothing but crumbs for her to lick up.

In other words, she may not feel like you really mean what you say and are just going through the motions out of obligation instead of doing it because you really want to. Does this make sense? Sorry im a bit tired and rambling. :/
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
How long did this period of time last?

During this time how many hours week did you spend doing one-on-one, date like things with you wife, just the two of you... things like talking (not about your children, finances, etc), going for walks together, going to dinner (watching TV and movies do not count).
Well it started with the birth of our children. We both agreed my wife would stay home and raise the children until hey were both in school. Alone time was easier to come by when they were small but we didn't get out much. As they grew I became more involved with their activities as a coach etc and a majority of my time was with them. We had alone time but not as much. Homework, running to and from activities etc, I would sit for hours at a time tickling my wife she loves that! Still the fast paced life got the best of me and I got caught up in it. Many nights she told me she would go tuck our youngest in bed and come to our room to find me fast asleep. I love my wife more than life.
We were not alone much due to our children. We do spend much more time together now approx 15 per but I am afraid it may be too late.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
This is why people say to put your spouse before your children. Its nice that your an attentive father but its very important to be an attentive husband as well. Do you compliment in passing or do you go up to her, stroke her face and tell her how beautiful she is?

Dont get me wrong... I do feel she was very wrong for making the choice to have an affair and she needs to own up to that instead of trying to blameshift it all on you. Of course she may feel like the "on occasion" and the compliments seem like they are nothing but crumbs for her to lick up.

In other words, she may not feel like you really mean what you say and are just going through the motions out of obligation instead of doing it because you really want to. Does this make sense? Sorry im a bit tired and rambling. :/
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I fully understand what you are saying. I do realize that I neglected our marriage and failed to be a great husband and a great father. I did give her compliments, buy her special gifts, and sincerely tell her I loved her. I am a very affectionate person and always held hands, rubbed shoulders and back etc even in public. I hope I am not too late, but I do not like the person she has turned into. I pray everyday we will be one again. I love her more than life!
My mind was always in 10 other places at once and is another area in which I am working on to improve.
 

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Does she seem at all remorseful for what she did? Did she tell you exactly what she felt she needed from you? Have either of you considered MC? I apologize if it seems like I am bombarding you with questions.
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No-one deserves to be cheated on... sorry your going through this.

SHE made that choice. Don't allow her to blame shift. No matter what you did or didn't do...YOU didn't cause her affair.

I think what you describe above is common... a common cause of the slow death of a marriage.

You can't put a spouse/marriage on the back burner for years on end and expect a good relationship at the end of it all.

Love and your connection die without regular feeding and nurturing.

We all need to prioritize at times in our marriages... know you fully and painfully understand why.

But still don't take any blame for her A... that for HER to own.
 

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What are your daughters into that required you to make them a priority over your wife? From what you have said you chose to make your relationship with your wife a lower priority than your children.

Then when your wife tried to get you to pay attention to a deteriorating marriage your response as that "we will soon have more time to spend together as our daughters soon will not need us as much.” Flowers, cards and an occasional “you’re pretty” mean nothing when her husband puts her on a back burner. So you pretty much told her that she was not very important to you. And now you are surprised that she believed you? Really? She was has not been your priority all these years, your children have been. She has no reason to believe that you will ever make her your priority.

Love in marriage is like a garden. It needs constant tending. How long do you think the garden will thrive if you told it to wait a few years… then you will have time to water it?

Why did she choose to have an affair? Probably because it filled a void. What she did is wrong. But it’s not unusual.

Since you did not take her seriously when she tried to tell you what she needed, she should have left you before starting another relationship.

Do you want to recover your marriage?
 

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I fully understand what you are saying. I do realize that I neglected our marriage and failed to be a great husband and a great father. I did give her compliments, buy her special gifts, and sincerely tell her I loved her. I am a very affectionate person and always held hands, rubbed shoulders and back etc even in public. I hope I am not too late, but I do not like the person she has turned into. I pray everyday we will be one again. I love her more than life!
I too hope that you are not too late. Your marriage can be saved the two of you work on this together.

Is she now telling you what she needs? Did she end all contact with the OM (other man)?

How did you find out about the EA? How long did it go on?

Have you read the books “Surviving an Affair”, “His Needs, Her Needs” and “Love Busters”… all by Dr. Harley? I think that they could really help you and your wife.

My mind was always in 10 other places at once and is another area in which I am working on to improve.
Hm… mind in 10 places at once. Obsessing on your daughters. Do you have ADD?

By the way, sometimes the point of an affair is to get the spouse's attention. Could that be what she did?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
How long did this period of time last?

During this time how many hours week did you spend doing one-on-one, date like things with you wife, just the two of you... things like talking (not about your children, finances, etc), going for walks together, going to dinner (watching TV and movies do not count).
Not enough, that iss how I got to this point. I failed to make time and so did she. I put my children first and now it is too late. I don't know if I will get her love back.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
This is why people say to put your spouse before your children. Its nice that your an attentive father but its very important to be an attentive husband as well. Do you compliment in passing or do you go up to her, stroke her face and tell her how beautiful she is?

Dont get me wrong... I do feel she was very wrong for making the choice to have an affair and she needs to own up to that instead of trying to blameshift it all on you. Of course she may feel like the "on occasion" and the compliments seem like they are nothing but crumbs for her to lick up.

In other words, she may not feel like you really mean what you say and are just going through the motions out of obligation instead of doing it because you really want to. Does this make sense? Sorry im a bit tired and rambling. :/
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I do feel she was left behind and I put other interests before her. I did tell her how pretty she was, sat for hours sometimes just rubbing her. However, I know I blew it big time and if I was more attentive to her needs, I would not be where I am today. I can understand how she must feel, I just dont understand how she can throw it all away.
 

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I do feel she was left behind and I put other interests before her. I did tell her how pretty she was, sat for hours sometimes just rubbing her. However, I know I blew it big time and if I was more attentive to her needs, I would not be where I am today. I can understand how she must feel, I just dont understand how she can throw it all away.
She most likely thinks that you threw it (your relationsihp with her) away a long time ago.

You need to find a way to see her side of this... I mean to not just understand it intelectually but to actually feel it in your gut.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Does she seem at all remorseful for what she did? Did she tell you exactly what she felt she needed from you? Have either of you considered MC? I apologize if it seems like I am bombarding you with questions.
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I truly believe she is sorry for what she has done and is trying to come back to me. She needed more time and affection. We have gone to MC but doesn't seem to help much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I too hope that you are not too late. Your marriage can be saved the two of you work on this together.

Is she now telling you what she needs? Did she end all contact with the OM (other man)?

How did you find out about the EA? How long did it go on?

Have you read the books “Surviving an Affair”, “His Needs, Her Needs” and “Love Busters”… all by Dr. Harley? I think that they could really help you and your wife.


Hm… mind in 10 places at once. Obsessing on your daughters. Do you have ADD?

By the way, sometimes the point of an affair is to get the spouse's attention. Could that be what she did?
Well she got my attention that is for sure. I failed to provide the time to sustain a healthy marriage. After the time spent with our daughters, too many times there was little left in a day for just us. She tried to tell me but I chose to ignore the signs of the unhealthy marriage.
The a lasted about 4 months and I found out through phone and text records and then found her phone.
 

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Well, while there is no acceptable excuse for an affair, you have to reallize that your kids will be grown up and on their own some day. Your wife, if you put enough into your marraige, will be with you for the rest of your life. Im just saying this because kids are a product of you and your wife, without her you wouldnt have your kids, in my opinion a man should always put his wife before anything and anyone. However, there is no excuse for an affair, that could have been avoided, I think people who cheat make up these excuses to fit the situation and justify what they have done. I dont think you did anything wrong, a man should care for and attend to his family, maybe just prioritize things a little different.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Well, while there is no acceptable excuse for an affair, you have to reallize that your kids will be grown up and on their own some day. Your wife, if you put enough into your marraige, will be with you for the rest of your life. Im just saying this because kids are a product of you and your wife, without her you wouldnt have your kids, in my opinion a man should always put his wife before anything and anyone. However, there is no excuse for an affair, that could have been avoided, I think people who cheat make up these excuses to fit the situation and justify what they have done. I dont think you did anything wrong, a man should care for and attend to his family, maybe just prioritize things a little different.
I agree with you 100%. I did put the children first over our marriage. It was always about the family for me and considered them when making plans. Maybe I was addicted to my children, I dont know. I admit I failed here, just praying it is not too late to reconcile. I may never get over the A, it has hurt me so deep.
 

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I agree with you 100%. I did put the children first over our marriage. It was always about the family for me and considered them when making plans. Maybe I was addicted to my children, I dont know. I admit I failed here, just praying it is not too late to reconcile. I may never get over the A, it has hurt me so deep.
In this rush to point out all your failings (and for a guy that got cheated on, they came pretty dang quickly), don't lose the fact that your wife has a whole lot that she needs to do as well. What ever your faults, cheating was not the answer. She needs to address and own her poor choice. Based on your posts, I believe there is a real danger of you taking all the blame and letting her ignore her bad decisions. Her sweeping her behavior under the rug will just cause you to trip over it later.

Check out the coping with infidelity form for some ideas on how to avoid this, as well as steps to rebuild if that is what you want.
 

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She's still in contact with the other man, isn't she. She works with him. Spends many more waking hours with him than you. Hasn't ended contact? He's new and exciting. You don't stand a chance against that. Not a chance. Is she even remorseful? I get the impression she's not, and she's putting it all on you. And you're buying it.
 

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You are a great Dad but you can only be seen as a great husband if you can be more of the man your wife is attracted to. You have to compromise. Give some hours to industry and be seen to make a buck. It's not about money, its about the hunter - gatherer, proviser image.
If you are not prepared to compromise then your wife is going to have the urge to look eslewhere for certain things. Dont do this to yourself any longer. You dont need to gain or give more hours in any day. Just rejig them so everyopne is happy and then ultimately you ill be happy too. Dont try to change her or others. Look to yourself. I am not saying you o anything wrong. You dont have to do anything wrong to become unattractive. Try a moderate change in your own life. If it works then alls good. If it doesnt then you can look to others to amend their behaviour.
 
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