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She is 3. This has nothing to do with my ability to raise my daughter.
Well… I mean to be fair, everything about you has to do with how you raise your daughter.

A parent can’t separate who they are from their child rearing. Children inevitability become their parents, or else rebel against them.

Start being a good role model. Face your mistakes and correct them rather than making things worse.
 

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Discussion Starter · #223 · (Edited)
Your story reminds me of another very popular thread cicci1990 . The only difference was that she was having an affair with a married guy who had a kid. This guy was a very old friend from college that she met when she was already with her future husband. She had him in the friend zone but her husband never trusted him. About 12 years later, their marriage was having issues which included him drinking excessively and that they were always arguing. After many years of no contact, she reached out to her friend, who just had a daughter, with a gift. That started them communicating more regularly to which it started to getting together to just talk. He was always obsessed with her but she didn’t really see him that way. Then during the pandemic, her marital problems and her husband’s drinking seem to escalate. She started sharing her marital problems with the friend, who started sharing that he too was unhappy with his marriage. She had a sexual affair and ended up getting pregnant with twins. Due to the timing of the sex, she thought it was the OMs. She confessed to her husband and left the house. She then called OM and told him about being pregnant and that it was his. Of course he was overjoyed because he was obsessed with her for years. She had strong feelings for him too but it was not enough to erase the passion she shared with her husband.

I say all that to ask, if he was such a great catch, why didn’t you get with him years ago? Because you had him in the friend zone. But like @oldshirt said, you now see him as a savior knight who’s going to take you away from your husband who you now have no tolerance for. Cicci also did some marital history revisionism. It took some time away from her mr wonderful to see that though her husband had problems, she still loved him more than she thought during her affair.

You’ve been romantically involved with this guy a year so it really has colored your memory of your marriage. Not saying your husband and you didn’t have issues but I’d bet you have been distant and cold towards your husband this past year. Don’t you think that impacted your husband? You don’t think there’s a possibility that the more you became attached to your great friend, that you were colder to your husband and that he may have started to act up? Thereby feeding the husband bad OM good narrative in your head?

These are just thoughts that you need to consider. You can go ahead and formerly blow up your family but I think that when real life hits and you’re in a real relationship with this guy, the shine both of you see for each other will start to tarnish. Knowing a guy or gal through an affair is completely different than knowing them in marriage. Throw in a kid, and potential baby daddy issues and that is a lot of negativity to overcome for a guy that was probably in your friends zone.
I am sure it had a big impact on my marriage and most of those things are true. How could it not.
We were not interested in each other back then and it just wasn’t an option with the circumstances I would have been 22 and younger. I will keep these things in mind though thank you.
 

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Chlo - you keep making remarks like "it wouldn't have happened if it weren't with each other", and "you have no doubts that you'll have a successful relationship with your affair partner", and your tone throughout is very "We are soulmates and no one else knows love like we do".

You seem to think your affair is different and you and your love are "special" and not like other cheaters.

I got news for you: your affair is just like the thousands of others that we have all read about here and other places. You two are high on the endorphins and bc of that you think that you two are sooooo in lurrrrrrvvvvve.

Lmao!!!

Once you're living together, that rush of chemicals to your brain will stop. And it won't be too long before one of you is seeking that rush out again with someone else.

You two will crash and burn.

I know you'll just read this and think "Whatever. Our love is real! He just doesn't know."

In 3 months or 6 months, a year, whenever it happens, you'll remember what I said.

You two are not different. Your love doesn't transcend time and space. You are simply 2 common cheaters.
 

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Well, if you see my post above, you'll see that I agree about honesty about dates, locations, time frames, etc.

However, I disagree with you about "white lies" regarding size, skill, what acts they did, etc. I'm not saying to tell them the harsh truth either. I'm saying to tell them it's not going to be discussed, and that's it.

"White lies" can be hard to keep track of, and they can also take on a life of their own. For example, if she doesn't want to tell her husband that OM is packing like a porn star, in a "white lie" she might say, "no, he's smaller than you." But then what if in the future, there's some sort of conflict and husband starts trying to score points against the OM by calling him a "micro-****" or telling mutual acquaintances that OM is hung like a gnat? It could lead to ugliness in the future, especially if they have to interact as part of co-parenting.

No, I am convinced it's far better not to engage at all. Refuse to answer. "I'm admitting responsibility for betraying you by cheating, but I'm not going into specifics of my sexual activities with [OM]", is a lot better than creating some "white lies" which could backfire in the future.
That is actually a much better resolution.
No sense in even opening up the topic in those areas
 

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He is an alcoholic. This hard been a hard decision but I am going to soon. I just have to figure out what I am going to say to him.
If he is an alcoholic who drinks every day, how is your daughter safe with him? Does he drive after drinking with her in the car? When you have left he may well have a lot of time alone with her. How can you make sure she is going to be safe ?

I would never ever take a young child away from her dad and move straight in with another man. Poor child is going to be so very confused. I would recommend at least a year in your own with her gradually introducing them to each other over that time.
 

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I don’t condone cheating but humans are what they are and bad stuff happens unfortunately. Punching someone into the ground isn’t going to help either. While it completely goes against the narrative on this forum I’ll offer the following:

I have 3 relatives who divorced to be with their affair partner. All 3 are still married 18 plus years.
Two of them had young kids and one did not but had a child with her affair partner after marriage. As far as I can tell they are all doing just fine.

My real life experience goes against what everyone here is always saying but that doesn’t exactly prove me right…. But proves it does happen. This is a risk only you yourself can evaluate.
 

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Honesty is always the best policy unless it is a personal attack on him, his looks, his body, his personality etc. Keep the conversation to I, how you feel etc
I am sure it had a big impact on my marriage and most of those things are true. How could it not.
We were not interested in each other back then and it just wasn’t an option with the circumstances. I will keep these things in mind though thank you.
Has anyone yet asked why you decided to have a kid with someone whom you figured out pretty early on it was a mistake to be married to? Beyond that, I'm really trying hard not to read some of your remarks about your daughter as being a bit less than world-class-mom-like. Your daughter should come first. Not saying that means you have to stay married, but I think every decision you make should really be done with your daughter's best in mind, not your own. You are on an intensely-selfish journey right now (it comes with the territory when you step out on your marriage before divorce... pretty much by definition). You need to over-compensate with your daughter in mind.
 

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She is 3. This has nothing to do with my ability to raise my daughter.
OP ( @Chlo94 ):

You're getting a lot of posts criticizing you over your affair, and your decision to leave your husband for the OM. I don't want posters to think that I'm defending cheating or justifying your decision (which I couldn't do, since I really know nothing about your real life situation); I'm generally not very forgiving of cheating. However, I'm looking at the practical side of things here. You're not trying to reconcile with your husband, and you're really not denying your blame and guilt in your affair. You came here with the clear intent to go forward with your plan to leave your husband and move on the the Other Man (OM), and I don't think that anything that the posters are saying is going to change that. OK, then, so let's see what we are actually here for.

You came with questions on, essentially, how to do this with the minimum hurt to your husband. You want to confess your cheating, because he deserves your confession and you aren't proud of it, but you could do the confession in the least emasculating way possible. So, I, and some others, gave you advice on that and I hope you heed it. Other posters just took some name-calling shots at you, and maybe on some level you deserve it as all cheaters do, but really, I don't think that's constructive at this point. It's not going to make your change your plans, and you still have no intention of reconciling. So, if other posters drive you away with insults, then I think you will miss the opportunity to learn some constructive points about how to do this regrettable process in the least hurtful manner. So, I hope that these insulting posts DON'T drive you away, and you stay on the thread to gain as much insight as you can from other's experiences. I know that a lot of posters have been hurt by their cheating Significant Others, and they bring that hurt to their posts. Just please take their posts with that understanding, and instead focus on what you can learn from other's experiences about trying to avoid being hurtful as much as you can under the circumstances.

I have posted already some important points in my observations of divorces, and indeed, in my experience in which my ex tended to denigrate/undermine my relationship with my kids. They're grown now, and she largely didn't succeed, but her animosity bubbled under the surface and did cause difficulties at various times with my relationship with my kids.

I think you just need to stick with three principles that mostly encompass the underlying themes of my prior post's points:

- Try to limit the hurt this inflicts on him as a person, as a man, and on his self-image. (Hence, my advice to refuse to talk about the intimate/sexual parts of your affair but be open about all else. No lies, even "white lies", just refuse to talk about the hurtful explicit parts.).

- Be fair and just to him in the divorce, and really, give him the edge on the settlement. (In a sense, the aggrieved party is owed a little slack, morally if not legally. And, in a practical sense, if your plan to be with the OM comes to fruition, then alimony, etc. will go away anyway. A fair child support settlement will remain.)

- ACTIVELY support your husband's relationship with his daughter. Not just avoid badmouthing him, but support it like you think that he's the best dad for her. I think that's very hard for custodial moms to do (I will use custodial moms because that's the most common, but the reverse applies as well), because the whole situation exists because the mom (you) think the husband is defective to begin with, which is why the divorce occurs. So it can be very difficult--in a sense, against human nature--to foster your shared children to have a close relationship with a man you didn't want to have a relationship with yourself. That's why I think some sort of family counseling may be useful. Also, please be aware that even unspoken, subconscious or behavioral clues on your part can lead to undermining your child's relationship with dad. There's a very sad story floating on the internet (culled from the Reddit "Am I The Asshole?"), in which, after Dad tries his best to bond and take care of his daughter that his ex-wife moved to another state, and after Dad pays for most of her wedding, he is told on the day before the wedding that Mom's new husband will be the one to walk the bride down the aisle and do the Daddy-Daughter dance together. (Link: Dad cut out as Father of the Bride ). I have to think that something like that has occurred at least in part, if not wholly, due to Mom's active or unspoken actions to replace Dad with the new husband in the Father Role. That is what you need to work very hard to prevent, not just avoiding active badmouthing of your ex.

I think other posters have experiences from their divorces, including those from a cheating spouse, and if they can move past the cheating part and accept that insulting or berating you is not going to change what happens, then maybe they can also offer you insights in how to avoid making the situation worse than it is.
 

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These are just thoughts that you need to consider. You can go ahead and formerly blow up your family but I think that when real life hits and you’re in a real relationship with this guy, the shine both of you see for each other will start to tarnish. Knowing a guy or gal through an affair is completely different than knowing them in marriage. Throw in a kid, and potential baby daddy issues and that is a lot of negativity to overcome for a guy that was probably in your friends zone.
100% this. Only been together with no responsibilities, no chores as others have said etc…now a young child is thrown into the mix, it will be completely different. Loves kids, but just playing with them for a short period, vs having them always around and throwing up at 2am on a work night (like my 6yo here a couple days ago). The earlier point made about what happens if OM has his own kid too was very good as well. Such a sad situation with a 3yo involved.
 

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99% of the time I would agree. It isn’t ending because of him and we will be much better together then my husband and I ever were together. I have known him for years and he is a good person.
He doesn't have kids but he loves kids. I have known him longer then those ten months. I know thing will be different but we are serious.
That just isn’t true and we are making these decisions together. My daughter will be fine if not better
A good person has a moral code and will not sleep with a married individual. This is one of the most immoral acts to partake in because it can ruin family unit(s) and more.

Can you really trust your Affair Partner (AP) to be FAITHFUL to you for life if you decide to marry him? Can he be a role model stepfather to your daughter? A person who does not have a moral code will FAIL on both counts due to a lack of moral high ground and tendency to give into temptations. Moral code is about having "principles" and "self-discipline." You need to think long and hard on these lines and focus on REFORMING yourself.

We never should have gotten married and I think this will be much better for both of us in the long term. He is an alcoholic and our relationship has been pretty awful.
I am not sure how true this is because a cheating partner will magnify faults of a loved-one to justify his/her own. But to take your words at face value, you seem to have a poor taste in men. You married an alcoholic and now you want to marry your AP? Your lack of sound judgement can be detrimental to your daughter who will look up to for guidance in life.

As stated above, you need to focus on REFORMING yourself before you embark on another relationship after divorcing your husband. This will be easier for you if you are religious but I am not sure if you are. But you can start with reading some books to get valuable perspective.

Infidelity: Why Men and Women Cheat

When You're The One Who Cheats: Ten Things You Need To Know

Anatomy of an Affair: How Affairs, Attractions, and Addictions Develop, and How to Guard Your Marriage Against Them

How to Be an Adult in Relationships: The Five Keys to Mindful Loving

Being Faithful To Your Future Spouse: Faithfulness Begins Before You Meet
 

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She is 3. This has nothing to do with my ability to raise my daughter.
It clearly does. I’m a working mom and I couldn’t wait to get home to my kiddos. I still can’t and they’re teenagers. You must have been spending many precious mommy hours away from her and with your boyfriend. And if you think a 3 year old’s world can’t be disrupted you obviously know nothing about children. She won’t understand why she doesn’t get to see daddy everyday. Expect sleep and potty training regression. They just express themselves differently. And you’re willing to give her up half of the time! Your mothering abilities are questionable at best. You’re also willing to alienate your own family. That’s a lot of eggs you’re putting in one basket, which speaks to your level of immaturity. Beyond my own child, I would have never risked the pain I would have caused my own parents. If you really want to start doing things right, you’d move out on your own for a while, but you’re not even considering any of the advice from people here so I’m not really sure why you’re on TAM. The affair is done, the decision to leave has finally been made, so maybe it’s time to think about someone other than yourself and your own wants for just a little while. Hell, if you really cared about the fallout you’d skip the part about the affair, tell everyone you’re leaving because you’re unhappy and keep the affair secret for another 6 months after you leave. Of course that doesn’t work either because he deserves to know. Further, you say you plan on telling her someday. What if daddy is a great dad to her? You thinks she’s going to be okay with this when she’s 12? 16? If they have a good relationship she will always see you as a cheater. Someone as selfish and self centered as you probably isn’t going to be the best mom of an older kid either. She won’t always be 3. I’m going to take this one step further, although I’m talking into the wind. You keep saying your boyfriend is a good guy. If he truly were, he would have told you that you two need an honest start to your relationship, and told you he’d wait while you ended your marriage before anything happened. You could have planned your exit 8-10 months ago. Your ability to justify this is mind boggling. No one says you need to stay in a unhealthy marriage, but you’ve literally done everything the wrong way.
 

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Of course is antipathy, but ladden with a biased crystal ball attack of what she is, who she is , and what and how she will be. In this scenario, to me is just what some red pill guys use to attack women in these cases.
I did not see it as gender specific. Nor did I see the relevance of humans being hard wired to cheat. We are hard wired to do all types of things that are hurtful to ourselves and others.
A typical exit affair unnecessarily hurts others, robs them of their time, exposes them to STDs potentially, sets a bad example for kids. That cheating is hardwired does not mitigate that.
 

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It clearly does. I’m a working mom and I couldn’t wait to get home to my kiddos. I still can’t and they’re teenagers. You must have been spending many precious mommy hours away from her and with your boyfriend. And if you think a 3 year old’s world can’t be disrupted you obviously know nothing about children. She won’t understand why she doesn’t get to see daddy everyday. Expect sleep and potty training regression. They just express themselves differently. And you’re willing to give her up half of the time! Your mothering abilities are questionable at best. You’re also willing to alienate your own family. That’s a lot of eggs you’re putting in one basket, which speaks to your level of immaturity. Beyond my own child, I would have never risked the pain I would have caused my own parents. If you really want to start doing things right, you’d move out on your own for a while, but you’re not even considering any of the advice from people here so I’m not really sure why you’re on TAM. The affair is done, the decision to leave has finally been made, so maybe it’s time to think about someone other than yourself and your own wants for just a little while. Hell, if you really cared about the fallout you’d skip the part about the affair, tell everyone you’re leaving because you’re unhappy and keep the affair secret for another 6 months after you leave. Of course that doesn’t work either because he deserves to know. Further, you say you plan on telling her someday. What if daddy is a great dad to her? You thinks she’s going to be okay with this when she’s 12? 16? If they have a good relationship she will always see you as a cheater. Someone as selfish and self centered as you probably isn’t going to be the best mom of an older kid either. She won’t always be 3. I’m going to take this one step further, although I’m talking into the wind. You keep saying your boyfriend is a good guy. If he truly were, he would have told you that you two need an honest start to your relationship, and told you he’d wait while you ended your marriage before anything happened. You could have planned your exit 8-10 months ago. Your ability to justify this is mind boggling. No one says you need to stay in a unhealthy marriage, but you’ve literally done everything the wrong way.
My XW handled things like this. She was having an affair and they were setting up a rental house to move into while I was unaware.
She moved out and right in with this guy. She got full custody.
To this day, the kids do not respect her.
They lasted about 18 months before the two of them were at each others throats( my Xw and her AP).
It was hard on the kids and me.
One of the biggest threats to a single mom's s kids is the boyfriend. You have a guy who has already demonstrated low morals. Now, he will have access to your young daughter. This is a real threat to her.
 

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My "advice" is that there really is no advice to give. While the OP did a terrible thing by cheating, I actually think she is showing more courage than I ever did by leaving the marriage and being willing to tell her husband the truth about the affair. When I was a wayward I spent a lot of time listening to negative reinforcement about how awful I was, much of that was on forums like this. I took advice from other wayward spouses that told me the best thing to do was reconcile. Nobody ever bothered to ask me if I actually loved my wife. Years later a therapist did.

After years of false reconciliations initialized primarily because of guilt and because I thought I could "fix" myself, ultimatly all I did was cause more pain, and delay everyone including my own children from moving on. So I think the OP has it right. Tell her husband the truth and file for divorce. As for the AP, it might work out, or it might not. But I could say the same for any man that she decided to become involved with. If it doesn't work out, it certainly doesn't sound like the betrayed husband is a plan B. I don't think she wants him anymore. So basically I agree with the guy that says this is nothing more than your standard garden variety exit affair.
 

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I did not see it as gender specific. Nor did I see the relevance of humans being hard wired to cheat. We are hard wired to do all types of things that are hurtful to ourselves and others.
A typical exit affair unnecessarily hurts others, robs them of their time, exposes them to STDs potentially, sets a bad example for kids. That cheating is hardwired does not mitigate that.

Dude, if you read my post carefully, I'm not absolving or justifying OP of anything, and I said so.
My point was towards the poster response to OP as an attack towards a person that is looking for help in this forum how to give her husband the news because the marriage is over. He didn't need to tell her all that finger pointing, Scarlett letter branding crap.

We should be giving advice to OP how to do just that, instead we are pontificating.
 
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