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Discussion Starter #1
I've been lurking on this forum for several weeks now... I have learned a lot and so wish I would have discovered TAM back when I was going through my divorce.

As I'm sure many newly divorced people do, I have been spending a lot of time autopsying my marriage. Part of what makes mine particularly bitter for me to swallow is that my former spouse and I had several conversations about why marriages fail and what it might take to keep a marriage afloat before we married in 1997. Before we married, we promised each other that if either of us ever felt compelled to stray, that we would inform the other and try to figure out what was going wrong in our relationship.

About two years in, we purchased our first home computer and I was having fun learning all about the Internet. I found some chat rooms and began an Internet friendship with a man who lived in another city. Innocent conversations started to drift into territory that felt wrong, and I realized that I was beginning to look forward to our conversations too much. After a few weeks of this, he told me that he was miserable in his marriage and that he thought he was in love with me. We had a few phone conversations and I realized it was just feeling icky. I confessed what was going on to my H. It caused us to examine some of the problems that we were having at the time and he made some changes that I asked for. I cut off the online relationship cold turkey and never spoke to that guy again. I apologized for this incident on many occasions.

Things in our marriage got much better, and then we had a child. In late 2009, I began suspecting that he was having an affair. I began investigating when my suspicions became too strong, and uncovered cell phone bills with numerous texts, credit card charges for jewelry and flowers that I hadn't received, and he kept having to go out of town for long trips to see his parents who iived five hours away. Of course, that was also where his college GF lived, who he had reconnected with on FB.

I won't relate the details of what happened because its long and awful. I repeatedly confronted him with evidence and he repeatedly stonewalled, had excuses, said they were just friends, etc. After about six months of this I went and filed for D, based solely on my suspicions. If I had been reading this forum, I would have known to install the VAR, etc. Even during the divorce process, he would never admit to the affair. He continued cake eating for months and wouldn't move out until the judge stated that she wouldn't grant the divorce because we were still living together. Then he up and moved with no notice, and left his parents address as his forwarding address. I found out about a month later than he had moved in with his AP, who had also been found out by her H and was divorced by then as a result. I later found out there had been yet another affair with a high school girlfriend going on at the same time, and her husband found out, confronted, and it caused a divorce there as well. Additionally, my H had been married once before me, and had cheated on her as well.

Our divorce has been final for over a year, and I've been dating and moving on with my life. The one thing that I've repeatedly asked him is about that promise we made to each other before our marriage. Whenever I bring that up, he always says that I cheated first.

I know what I had was a short-lived EA. I've always felt horrible about it. He wants me to believe that I deserved his infidelity as a result... that's what he's insinuated, although he still doesn't admit to the affairs (both of which I finally confirmed with the OWH's)

I've spoken to my therapist, my friends, but I want opinions from people who don't know me as I know you will all be brutally honest. I need to wrap my head around this as part of my healing process.

Did I deserve what I got in the end?
 

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Why do you take this in terms of deserving?
Don't go there. Ever. It doesn't work this way.

He cheated becuase he's a cheater. Period. If he was not happy in the marriage for whatever reason (including you EA) he had honorable options like every one else. He only reverted to his old habits. He shifts the blame when you owned tour stuff. That's the diference. He will cheat on his new GF (Already wife?).

He has no shame, not only destroyed his own marriage nastyly but destroyed another two homes (discounting his first marriage!). He's a serial cheater and a coward who can't accept personal responsability and lacks empathy. He's fundamentaly flawed.

You just picked the wrong guy. You didn't deserve it.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Why do you take this in terms of deserving?
Don't go there. Ever. It doesn't work this way.

He cheated becuase he's a cheater. Period. If he was not happy in the marriage for whatever reason (including you EA) he had honorable options like every one else. He only reverted to his old habits. He shifts the blame when you owned tour stuff. That's the diference. He will cheat on his new GF (Already wife?).

He has no shame, not only destroyed his own marriage nastyly but destroyed another two homes (discounting his first marriage!). He's a serial cheater and a coward who can't accept personal responsability and lacks empathy. He's fundamentaly flawed.

You just picked the wrong guy. You didn't deserve it.
I take it that way (I suppose) because he insinuates that he was justified in whatever he did, because I cheated first. I never thought of what I did as "cheating", because I owned up to it. I know it was wrong and it still feels really disgusting when I think about it. When I read here about the "fog" and how you expereince endorphins from an affair I realized I had experienced some of that with the OM. But, since I never laid eyes on the guy, never met him in person... I just didn't put it in quite the same category. I've told my ex repeatedly that it just doesn't compare. Some people here have basically said that there's not much of a difference between EA's and PA"s and I just wondered if I was rug sweeping with my own history in order to live with myself. I tend to be hard on myself and if I brought this on, I wanted to deal with that.
 

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I take it that way (I suppose) because he insinuates that he was justified in whatever he did, because I cheated first. I never thought of what I did as "cheating", because I owned up to it. I know it was wrong and it still feels really disgusting when I think about it. When I read here about the "fog" and how you expereince endorphins from an affair I realized I had experienced some of that with the OM. But, since I never laid eyes on the guy, never met him in person... I just didn't put it in quite the same category. I've told my ex repeatedly that it just doesn't compare. Some people here have basically said that there's not much of a difference between EA's and PA"s and I just wondered if I was rug sweeping with my own history in order to live with myself. I tend to be hard on myself and if I brought this on, I wanted to deal with that.
Did you tell your internet chat guy that you loved him? Tell him he was your soul mate? Exchange explicit sexual messages with him? Badmouth your husband or marriage to him? What was the content of your communications with internet other man?

If they were of the nature of soul mates, my husband is a jerk, I love you and want to have sex with you, it's not likely your husband forgot it and it may have allowed him to rationalize his affair. It may have changed the way he looked at you forever. When you know your spouse is telling someone else those types of things that you thought should only be reserved for you, it is hard to ever forget it.

A physical affair is usually more of a dealbreaker for a man than an emotional affair, but if your husband knew the content of your communication with other man, depending on how bad it was, it could be hard for him to get over. Also, many men are not very talky-touchy-feely and keep things to themselves. So it could have been bothering him for years without him ever saying anything about it, though he likely would have taken it out on you in other ways if this was the case.

If he did harbor this type of feeling, he should have discussed it with you or divorced you. It is apparent that you realized what you did was wrong and you did your best to make it right and your husband would have seen that, too. If he couldn't get over it, cheating was not the way to make it better. Also, it was an awful long time to wait to have a revenge affair, it that's what it was.

My guess is that he's just using that old internet chat affair as an excuse, to blame-shift to you, and that it isn't the real reason he had his affairs.

In any event, it is an answer you are never going to have, so stop worrying about it and just remember what you've learned so you don't make the same mistakes again.
 

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He believes he was justified to cheat.

This is him trying to reconcile an action he knows is WRONG so that he will not fill guilty about it.

He knows he did something that he swore he would not do and he is trying to make himself feel okay about it.

No, you do not deserve this.

Old saying " Two wrongs don't make a right"
 

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You knew you were entering the danger zone and got out, you chose your marriage.. you got out before you got in deeper, how is that cheating?

He is shifting blame, don't give it another thought and move on with your life.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Did you tell your internet chat guy that you loved him? Tell him he was your soul mate?

No and no.

Exchange explicit sexual messages with him? Badmouth your husband or marriage to him? What was the content of your communications with internet other man?

I recall that I confided in him about the problems I was having in the marriage at the time. I didn't badmouth the marriage, just asked him about some of my husband's behaviors to get a man's perspective.


If they were of the nature of soul mates, my husband is a jerk, I love you and want to have sex with you, it's not likely your husband forgot it and it may have allowed him to rationalize his affair. It may have changed the way he looked at you forever. When you know your spouse is telling someone else those types of things that you thought should only be reserved for you, it is hard to ever forget it.

A physical affair is usually more of a dealbreaker for a man than an emotional affair, but if your husband knew the content of your communication with other man, depending on how bad it was, it could be hard for him to get over. Also, many men are not very talky-touchy-feely and keep things to themselves. So it could have been bothering him for years without him ever saying anything about it, though he likely would have taken it out on you in other ways if this was the case.

If he did harbor this type of feeling, he should have discussed it with you or divorced you. It is apparent that you realized what you did was wrong and you did your best to make it right and your husband would have seen that, too. If he couldn't get over it, cheating was not the way to make it better. Also, it was an awful long time to wait to have a revenge affair, it that's what it was.

My guess is that he's just using that old internet chat affair as an excuse, to blame-shift to you, and that it isn't the real reason he had his affairs.

Thank you for your accessment. I agree with you, but really wanted the opinions of others. The description I presented in the OP was truly my best recollections of what happened (as its been 13 years ago now) and I didn't sugarcoat it because I wanted true opinions.

In any event, it is an answer you are never going to have, so stop worrying about it and just remember what you've learned so you don't make the same mistakes again.
That's exactly why I'm asking the question, I want to learn from the experience as I move forward. Thanks for your reply!
 

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You were wrong, you realized it and stopped the behavior, he was wrong, blame shifted to you and escalated. You do not deserve, did not deserve what you got. Unless you look at it as "you deserve better". Which is what, with the knowledge you have gained you are going to get. Work on yourself and you will be richly rewarded.
 

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I don't know why you almost got into an affair with someone earlier. You should do some self-analysis for that. I see that you felt bad and apologized to your husband.

Your slip does not license him to cheat. He did not tell you, whereas in your A you disclosed it to your husband.

He denied all through his A (how many months?). He is completely wrong. He was a cheater in his first marriage.

If I may ask you, how did you marry him?

No one in the world deserves to be cheated. It is so very painful to be cheated on. Heck.
 

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Before we married, we promised each other that if either of us ever felt compelled to stray, that we would inform the other and try to figure out what was going wrong in our relationship.
Everyone says that! But it rarely works out that way

Don't keep looking back - you're divorced, cut the cord, move on. What good will analysing do now?
 

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I would read His Needs, Her Needs.

Some guys and girls are bums, and they cheat becuase they are bums.

But not all.
 

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Fundamentally a cheater is flawed for any number of reasons. Blaming yourself for anothers weakness if just dumb.
 

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No you did not deserve it! When you had your EA, he obviously forgived you and you both moved on. (Had a child together.) if he had a problem at the time he would have left you there and then.

He doesn't have an excuse for his affair and is using yours to justify it. Quite sad really.

Edit: yeah I wouldn't say yours was an EA as such, it seemed like you nipped it in the bud.
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I think you saw where you where headed, into an EA and did the right and smart thing. I'm not sure I would call what you had an EA because it sounds like it was only a friendship on your side, though the other guy was clearly pushing hard for far more.

Your ex on the other hand cheated on his first wife, on you, and even on his affair partners. Really nice guy there.(very much not!)

He's a classic serial cheating blame shifter. If it wasn't your talking to that guy, he would be saying it was one a dozen other excuses.

I think the only thing you did wrong was marrying a cheater. He cheated on his first wife,a now on his second. Want to bet his marriage 3 & 4 are going to end?
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I don't know why you almost got into an affair with someone earlier. You should do some self-analysis for that. I see that you felt bad and apologized to your husband.

Your slip does not license him to cheat. He did not tell you, whereas in your A you disclosed it to your husband.

He denied all through his A (how many months?). He is completely wrong. He was a cheater in his first marriage.

If I may ask you, how did you marry him?

No one in the world deserves to be cheated. It is so very painful to be cheated on. Heck.
I do know why I got into the EA. Three things happened in the months before that upset me deeply, shook me to my core, and made me feel insecure in our marriage. I didn't list them in my first post because I didn't want to "justify" what I did, I wanted to take responsibility for what I did.

1) On our second wedding anniversary, a day we had both taken off of work to spend together, he went to go see his parents and came back at 2pm in the afternoon. I felt second best.

2) I found out that he had lied to me about a "friendship" he had with a woman while we were dating. I had asked him on a few occasions if they were more than friends, and he said they were not. I found out from her later that they had a physical relationship. This took place before he and I decided to be exclusive, so its not that he cheated on me, but he did lie about it and that upset me greatly.

3) He was let go from his full-time, professional job. Instead of trying to secure employment, he decided it was okay to work a minimum wage job for 20 hours a week and let me support him. We were working towards buying a house so that we could have kids, and I left like he had checked out of our plan without telling me.

I know these are crucial elements to explaining how I got to the point where I was ripe for an EA... like I said, I didn't want to blame shift. I wanted opinions based on what I DID and wanted to see if anyone felt as if I invited the outcome. I appreciate your responses.
 

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Media Girl, Im impressed, you are a decent person, and your child has a good mom , nothing to add but wish you the best.
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