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I've read so many sad stories here over the last month or so and I've decided it's time to add mine. Married 19 years with 2 kids (18 year old daughter and 16 year old son)

6 weeks ago my wife told me she's been cheating on me. I had been suspicious for sometime - I certainly knew something was horribly wrong in our marriage and that she had pushed me away emotionally. For some reason she decided to come clean -- sort of. To keep from dragging this out too much, I'll compress the details. She told me she'd been having an affair with a co-worker, but initially lied about the timeline and details. Over the next week, she told me the whole story and as it turns out, it was more than one affair. It was an affair 5 years ago with a co-worker that lasted a short time, her current affair with a co-worker that has lasted 3 years, and a one night stand on a business trip a year ago. Needless to say I am devastated, crushed, ripped apart. I was in no way prepared for that. It has been the worst 6 weeks of my life. She told me she had ended the affair and wanted to fix us. Not true. She has remained in contact with the current three year affair through WhatsApp. She changed jobs and moved away from where he works but.... what else is there to say. She hasn't stopped all contact, she has not provided transparency, she really has done nothing. She has begun individual counseling, we've gone to couples counseling twice, but I'm not sure she truly wants to work it out. I've been a complete mess. I'm all over the place. One minute I want to run and file for divorce, the next I can't imagine my life without her. I've told her I think we could get through this and I've also told her I want her out of the house. (She won't leave). I've begun intense counseling and have been reading everything I can get my hands on. I'm now at a place, 6 weeks in, where I feel like I can think a bit more clearly. She has moved into the spare room so we are in different rooms at least, but for most of the time over the last few weeks I have followed her around trying to get her to talk and explain to me, and beg me for forgiveness, etc. of course that pushed her away further. I have for the past few days tried to seriously implement a 180. I'm only moderately successful so far. I do love her, but I don't think I can get over this - I don't think she wants me too, even though she says she's done with the other guy and never wants to be with him ( he's married with two kids, and yes his wife now knows about the affair). I just don't know what to do. I definitely want to get past Christmas before I do anything, but then what? This sucks soooo badly. I can't imagine starting over at 48 years old. I can't imagine finding happiness with someone else. I also can't imagine staying with my wife after the pain she has caused me and I'm not sure she really wants to stay either. I know the outcome of this, I just don't want to accept it. Man I was (still am) in love with her. I obviously did not get everything right in our marriage, but WTF!? By the way, if anyone has read No More Mr Nice Guy, that book is like a blueprint of me. I'm working through that in counseling. I can definitely see my contribution throughout our marriage to her unhappiness - I'm in no way excusing what she did - just trying to be honest with myself about my short comings in our relationship. So in summary, self reflection and counseling, hitting the gym like crazy, trying the 180, still completely miserable and don't know what to do. I never imagined my life would be like this.
 

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SO if I'm reading this correctly, 3 affairs?

one 1 night stand.
One short lived affair (probably a year)
One long term (at least 3 years).

And this is what she's admitting to. So at least 20% of you marriage together has been her cheating.
And now she's not doing any of the necessary heavy lifting to"fix" this marriage?


Time for some brutality.
You're married to a serial cheat. She can't stop cheating nor will she.She is incapable of stopping.

If you stay with her, you will have nothing but heart ache, pain and suffering.

Here's a thought if you stay with her (not sure who originally wrote this but it gets right to the core):
Gee, thanks a whole heck of a lot for that. So instead of leaving me so that you could be with someone who was just as big of a scumbag as yourself and so that I could be free to find someone decent who would do right by me, it was sooooo much better for me that you stayed so that I could waste years of my life that I will never get back in order to continue being with a lying cheater who didn't deserve me.

Thanks a whole hell of a lot for that since being with a lying cheater is such a freaking awesome prize and an awesome reward for all of my years of loyalty, dedication, love, and sacrifices.

Yep, I hit the lying, cheating jackpot when I got to keep such a special prize as you.

Why stay?
Why allow her to disrespect you?
Why allow yourself to be treated like this?
Why listen to another lie?

1) First and foremost, your spouse is a person of low character (I would prefer to say pig, but that might be too "mean")
2) Second - The affair is not nor will it ever be your fault
3) Lawyer. Today. Know your rights. Start the Divorce. Start to get primary rights to your kids
4) Doctor - get STD/STI/HIV tests started. You life depends on it!
5) Counselor for you. One that has experience with infidelity. You're going to need to talk with someone about this
6) Eat.
7) Sleep (at least 8 hours a night if possible)
8) Drink water (avoid alcohol at this point, it won't help)
9) Get to gym and start working out - it helps the body, the mind, and the soul
10) Start to separate funds
11) 180 like your life depended on it.
12) DNA your kids. Not so much to see if they are yours (hopefully they are), but to show her that you can't trust anything about her
13) Expose. Lies thrive in the dark.
 

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Serial cheaters never stop.

Quit being a doormat and get on with your life or you'll just live as you are.

Her affairs are 100% on her. How you're handling this is on you.

Wait til after Christmas is just an excuse to do nothing.

How do you know other mans wife knows?

I'll bet she doesn't. Tell her now!!!! That's your first step
 

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Serial cheaters don’t stop cheating until they stop breathing.

Plus she’s still in contact with at least one of her APs?

Nothing to save here, and the sooner you realize that, the better.

Do yourself a huge favor and file for divorce ASAP.
 

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Dude what is there to save. Your wife is a phony and a scam artist. 48 years old is young, that is a guys prime still. There are good women out there. You can find one and have a good relationship for the rest of your life.

Look you have two choices, 1 year of intense pain where you detach and at the end of it you will wonder why you ever wanted to stay, you will also think that your marriage wasn't as good as you thought. You will think why I put up with it for so long.

Or you can stay with this serial cheater who probably cheated on you more then just these two times and probably will for the rest of your life. You wife is like a burned out drug addict. You need to start seeing her this way. She is just not marriage material. Unfortunately you marred a person that is really only good for partying with and having fun with.

Or you can open your marriage since you have been living in an open marriage anyway. The problem with that is you seem like the monogamous type and being in an open marriage is going to prevent you from finding the kind of women who you might want to move on with.

Work on getting strong so you can move on. Toxic people make for toxic lives.

OK I said all that because that is my usual advice (it's good advice too) but lets get down to what your real problem is. It's what has been your problem for awhile, it's why you resonate with that book. Your problem is fear. You have always been afraid of losing her and it has been the motivation in all your actions. It also makes you an easy target for women who will cheat. It also will drive away women who are not cheaters because they will be attracted to assertiveness. Worst of all your fear has got you desperately holding on to a women who treated you terribly.

You need to break the cycle. The good news is this is the kind of thing that if you learn to get strength from it you will never have this kind of fear of losing someone again. It will change your whole life.

Look buddy I am SO sure that if you move on (assuming you learn to fix some of your passivity and codependency) you will be happier then you ever thought you could be and you will have joy again that I am willing to bet my house on it. I am telling you you can read story after story about that. I and SO many of us went through it.

I remember when my first love cheated on me. I had just proposed to her. She was the only girl I ever loved and it had taken me to my mid 20's to find her. I loved this women with my whole heart and she had shown no signs of cheating. I was never a "nice guy" codependency type though, but still she did it when she went on a trip. But here is the deal I had never been in love before and was convinced without a shadow of a doubt that I would never love like that again, that if I gave her up I was basically going to be alone for the rest of my life.

The thing was for me I couldn't see myself being with someone who cheated on me, so that is a little different but still I recognized that what we had would never be the same. What is the same in the story with you and I is I knew KNEW I would never have love again. I remember asking people, will I really love again? Am I really going to get over this? They all like me now said yes, and I thought all of them just didn't have a love like I did.

So I did the bravest thing I think I ever did in my whole life, I ghosted. I knew I would never love again but for my own sanity and out of self respect I gave up on the thought of love and happiness. The first month was the most painful of my entire life. Even moment was excruciating. I like you felt so hopeless. However every month saw the pain get less and less. By a year I was no longer in pain and the girl was just a thought I had for a few moments every day. By two years I was dating and because of my experience of being in love I had a lot more confidence this time. So I was having much more success. At two in a half years I met my wife. We have been married 14 years.

I married a women who my ex isn't even fit to be in the same room with. I married pretty much one of the best people I know. Our marriage isn't perfect but together we have made a great life. But saying all that if she cheated on me tomorrow, I would be fine. I would hurt for a year, start to date, (you know the story.) This is why I say this process is going to change you and fix some of that fear problem you have, assuming you think about it the right way.

I remember when I was going through it my Mom who has had quite a lot of heartbreak said to me "look you are going to get through this, but remember the most important thing to learn from this is, you will never have a harder relationship in your life to get through, because it's your first one and you have to do the whole thing acting on faith, but if you can get through this one you can get through anything". See that is the difference now, now I know it couldn't be harder then the first one, and I am fine. I can get through any pain because it is not possible to have worse because that was pain and hopelessness. I will always know there is hope now.

Dude see this as emotional boot camp. This whole thing is part of the process of you getting strong, if you let it be. I promise you YOU WILL HAVE JOY AGAIN. There is happiness out there for you. You will find love again. But you have to leave this toxic women to get it. This is detox, emotional boot camp, chemotherapy. Yes you are going to suffer for a while, but there is freedom waiting on the other side.

Cry, rage, post on here, but keep moving forward. Be brave brother, have courage move on and you will find a better life.
 

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Anotherbrokenguy

I would be lying if I didn’t say to follow Gus’s advice above, there’s no hope if she is in contact. Tell her you are telling the kids, her parents and your parents. File for divorce and tell her all communication is to be in email only. If she talks you can hand her your lawyers business card, then tell her to contact him since she doesn’t understand you. Quickly get her to sign agreements that are in your favor, separate financials TODAY. Do not wait, she doesn’t have the best interests for you or the kids. Get a car and cameras to put in the house. Not your kids rooms or bathrooms, but common areas of the house. This will protect you from falsified claims of abuse, also get a voice activated recorder and have it in your pocket at all times. Others will help with other measures you need to implement.
 

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If you have diffiulty picturing starting over qt 48, how about at 58?

Your wife ia nor who you think she is. Not who you have believed you were married to for decades. She is someone completely different. THe woman you love does not exist. Maybe she did way back when, but that is not likely. She has always had this hidden sidde you never imagined could exist.

Divorce is not ideal, but it isn't nearly as bad as you probably imagine. There are so many good experiences out there waiting for you! You can't have the life you have assumed you would, but you can have a fantastic life from here on out.

I have to wonder why she voluntarily came forward now. Either someone was about to out her to you, or she decided it was time to end the marriage. Maybe she doesn't have the guts to say she wants a divorce, so she unloaded the affairs on you to force you t9 be the bad guy.
 

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Given her history of serial cheating I have to ask : do your kids look like you?
 

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I can't imagine starting over at 48 years old.
I started over at 51. I'm now happily remarried to a fantastic woman. What's your problem?...... Personally I think you are doing some things wrong. I made the same mistakes at first. Even if you want to stay married (IMO a bad idea), you should totally act like you don't. In order for this to have any chance of working she has to own everything and she won't do that as long as you are showing any signs of weakness. You need to proceed as if you are going to get a divorce. Show no mercy. That's not to say you should do anything illegal, but just don't give her any leeway. If she then comes back and begs you to reconsider you can (against better judgement) at that point lay down the law and let her know what she will need to do if you are going to stay married. DON'T MAKE IT EASY!. On the other hand If she lets you go though with the divorce without much resistance, that should tell you something. In that case you should get off your a**, start hitting the gym (a good idea regardless if you don't already), buy some smart new cloths and don't look back.

Also IMO counseling is a waste of time and money. Spend it on a lawyer.
 

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I look at this differently.
No, not really.

Because of her, you now get to live two lives, instead of one.

Her, your wayward wife? She has lived more than one life, likely three or four. But her lives were half-lives. Your marriage did not decay to nothing because only she knew.
She fessed up to you because she wants you to pull the plug. She only has the nerve to remove her mind from the marriage, and her body for short sprints under strange sheets.

You have been given a new life.
Take it and enjoy it.

Just Sayin'
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to provide comments. In my mind I realize the situation I'm in and what I need to do. In my heart, I'm still grieving for the loss of what I believed my life to be. Everyday is constant pain. My mind is in overdrive and I can't concentrate for more than 10 seconds. Everyday does get a little better, but it still feels like this will never end. I know that as much as I wish I could totally forgive her and build a better marriage from the ashes of this one, that will never happen. She won't do even the most basic steps to work on things, and she'll never do all the things I would require to even remotely trust her. Yes, I fully realize what that means, she does not want to save the marriage. She's forcing me to do what she should have done 5 years ago. My problem now is she won't leave. We've talked about separation, but she thinks I should move out. I refuse to - she refuses to - so we're stuck in the same house, "separated", but living together. I hate it. She makes decent money, plus she's going to get a portion of my military retirement, so she can easily afford to move out. She just thinks she should get the house. I refuse to let that happen. Maybe I'm just being stubborn and not thinking clearly, but I believe she should suffer the consequences of her actions and I shouldn't have to suffer anymore. All this makes my brain hurt and I don't think I'm clear enough in the head "or heart" to make good decisions right now. On another note, a few people mentioned genetic testing for my kids. We had to have that done for my daughter a few years ago for some medical issues, and I just tested my son a few weeks ago. They are mine so that's one issue I can put to rest. I need to get tested for STDs. Oh, one other point. Someone said thy wondered what prompted her to tell me. She had broken it off with the other guy and he got mad at her and reached out to her brother ( very strange) and told her he was reaching out to me so she had to do it first. He did reach out to me by the way. He's a very strange and broken person, filled with hate and anger. I still can't believe this is my life.............
 

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As I advised you in my first post.

Contact a lawyer today. You need to start the process in finding a shark lawyer that will:
1) Help you get the divorce going
2) Help you to protect all your assets
3) Help you to get her out of your life
 

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So do an in-house separation and let the divorce judge decide who gets the house.

In the meantime, maybe take the marital bed — frame, headboard, footboard, box springs, mattresses, all of it — out into the front yard and dump it on the curb in a big, messy pile next to the trash cans.

When neighbors stop to ask you what’s going on, tell them very simply (and a little loudly) that you’ve discovered that your wife is a serial cheat and that you no longer have need of a marital bed.

Might not be long before she decides she doesn’t want the house after all.
 

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I agree with Gus. Let the judge decide what happens to the house. Find separate living rooms and get a lock for your door.

You can do things stoic and diplomatically, and you should, but make no mistake, you're enemies now. No emotion, no fighting. Carry on doing fun things in your life that bring you happiness.

And never forget that if not for the OM threatening to blackmail her, you'd probably never have known. That shows you how much she respects you. Hint: zero. And how much she respects her reputation. Hint: 100.
 

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You have been given excellent advice. Divorce her and fast. Don't move out. I personally like Gus's last advice to get her to move. I might also add a billboard on her way to work with a big picture of her and a caption that says "Say Hi to a 3 time cheating wife who thinks I should move so she can have the house. Not HAPPENING!"
 

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Abg, I am 57 and divorced for about a year. We separated about a year prior to that, an in-house separation. At first sort of an attempt to fix the marriage, though after many various events the final straw which led to the separation was pretty obviously the death knell.

I had all the same thoughts and grieving you are describing. You are going through completely normal feelings. Here are some thoughts from someone recently in your shoes.

1. Take action towards your divorce. Action will give you comfort that you have some control over your life and future. This is important after discovering how your stbxw stole your right to make informed decisions about your own life. Be sure to follow the advice of your lawyer.

2. Yes, you are grieving several losses. What sucked the most for me was not being able to talk to my best friend about it, as she was the one who committed the betrayals.

3. Your kids are going to be fine. They are busy with their own lives, and as long as you maintain normal honest communications with them, they will be fine. My daughters, in their mid to late 20's, have been very protective of me, and very supportive of me. My son is in college and is doing his own thing, but he does make an effort to keep in touch. I have been honest with them but not dragged them into the marital conflicts. Treat your kids as adults.

4. You are an imperfect spouse, but ... You are not in any way responsible for your wife's betrayals. Don't beat yourself up. A dishonest betrayer set out to intentionally deceive you.

5. Life after divorce is very good. You now have the freedom to follow your own passions and keep your own schedule. Take full advantage of all the opportunities out there. You will be surprised how much the world has changed and how much there is to do.

6. You will be in high demand with women! Have no worries about being able to have whatever kinds of relationships you may want. So, relax! When you're ready to date or socialize, you'll have plenty of great options.

7. You will see more and more how broken your stbxw is.
 

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SO if I'm reading this correctly, 3 affairs?

one 1 night stand.
One short lived affair (probably a year)
One long term (at least 3 years).

And this is what she's admitting to. So at least 20% of you marriage together has been her cheating.
And now she's not doing any of the necessary heavy lifting to"fix" this marriage?


Time for some brutality.
You're married to a serial cheat. She can't stop cheating nor will she.She is incapable of stopping.

If you stay with her, you will have nothing but heart ache, pain and suffering.

Here's a thought if you stay with her (not sure who originally wrote this but it gets right to the core):
Gee, thanks a whole heck of a lot for that. So instead of leaving me so that you could be with someone who was just as big of a scumbag as yourself and so that I could be free to find someone decent who would do right by me, it was sooooo much better for me that you stayed so that I could waste years of my life that I will never get back in order to continue being with a lying cheater who didn't deserve me.

Thanks a whole hell of a lot for that since being with a lying cheater is such a freaking awesome prize and an awesome reward for all of my years of loyalty, dedication, love, and sacrifices.

Yep, I hit the lying, cheating jackpot when I got to keep such a special prize as you.

Why stay?
Why allow her to disrespect you?
Why allow yourself to be treated like this?
Why listen to another lie?

1) First and foremost, your spouse is a person of low character (I would prefer to say pig, but that might be too "mean")
2) Second - The affair is not nor will it ever be your fault
3) Lawyer. Today. Know your rights. Start the Divorce. Start to get primary rights to your kids
4) Doctor - get STD/STI/HIV tests started. You life depends on it!
5) Counselor for you. One that has experience with infidelity. You're going to need to talk with someone about this
6) Eat.
7) Sleep (at least 8 hours a night if possible)
8) Drink water (avoid alcohol at this point, it won't help)
9) Get to gym and start working out - it helps the body, the mind, and the soul
10) Start to separate funds
11) 180 like your life depended on it.
12) DNA your kids. Not so much to see if they are yours (hopefully they are), but to show her that you can't trust anything about her
13) Expose. Lies thrive in the dark.
Question
What's the 180?
I've seen many posts mentioned this and I have to ask

Sent from my QMV7A using Tapatalk
 

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I am in the divorce industry, and I have had clients start over in their 70's. In your 50's you can still attract women of all ages. Why would you stay with an obvious serial cheater. It is absolutely endemic to females in affairs, especially serial cheaters, that tear down their husbands to the point that they are convinced that they cannot attract another woman. That is absolute bullcrap. The demographics of North America show more single women than men. Numbers are in your favor. Do yourself a great turn, put yourself out there. Hit the gym, get a new wardrobe, you will make yourself very happy. Why live in misery? Your wife is not worth a piece of used toilet paper. In fact she is the brown stain on the toilet paper.

I saw this elsewhere, but a couple such as you and your wife broke up, next time the cheating wife saw him, he was with his new fiance. She was younger, taller, prettier, everything the wife was not. She was sitting there with her AP, he had not committed to her, as he was still married, ten years older, not as well fixed, short, fat and bald. His parting shot to his exWW: "It is true, they DO really affair down". Her parting words to him:"Fvck off".
 

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I am not trying to be mean, but when you said, "I can't believe this is my life", let's be honest. She's a repeat cheater and you knew that. Perhaps you can't believe this is still your life. YOU need to take action. Now, here are some points.

1. You are better off at 48 ending this than being 53 or 63, even though ending it at anytime and any age is better. Age is not a prison.

2. Stop trying to compare a new life with some imaginary new person to the old one. That keeps you scared and is not real. End this and get to know yourself. There is no rush to get involved again. You have been married so long that you don't know how to be unmarried ...yet.

3. She has you under her thumb and knows it. She didn't leave, even if just for a week or weekend!? That's like a big FU to you.

4. Holidays schmolidays. Blow it up. It's on her. You not wanting to "ruin" things makes it sound like this is the only holiday ever and it is like a robbery victim not shouting for help because they don't want to interrupt dinner. It is all her fault. Blame her, flame her, whatever. She is not playing nice with you. Like not even a little bit.

5. Move in a ending this sham of a marriage and don't change for at least 30 days. Get used to the feeling. Get used to the fear. You can change, but go hard for 30 days. It takes that long for you to form a ha it and break your old Mr. Nice guy habits.

6. Buckle up cause it's gonna get rougher. No matter what.
 
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