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Old 4th October 2010, 02:02 PM   #1
Heather
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How do I take the final step?

Hi
I really need some help today - just feel as though I want to run... don't care where! Some of you may have heard some of this but I have been married for 22 years. 6 months ago I discovered that my husband has been having an affair. It started 6 years ago when I was depressed after the death of my mum and the discovery of a genetic disorder which she has passed to me and I in turn have passed to our children. At this point my husband found comfort with another and thought about leaving but decided to stay with me as the children were young. He gave up the OW until about 3 years ago when they met again after her mum died and he went to the rescue.
Initially he denied the affair but as the weeks and months went by more and more things have emerged. He has been abroad with her, away to the coast with her in the UK, out for days with her and her son (from a previous marriage). I even know what she looks like as there are photos of all this on our home computer!
We have deicded to separate - at my request - for 6 months to decide where we go from here, but he still has not fully gone yet and I am really feeling the strain. I feel so weak when he is around... the ties of 22 years are hard to sever and I don't want to hurt him despite what he has done. Our children are both away at University now and coping in their own ways with the separation and what he has done.
My problem is that I think I know what the outcome wil be. He is still texting the OW daily and recently told her he is looking forward to her meeting his mum and sister... he also asked her for her ring size. He says he hasn't decided yet what he wants... I just feel ripped apart. How do I take that final step? I feel angry - hurt - desparate... he just says it isn't a choice between us it is a choice for him wether to be alone or with someone... I don't understand anymore... I just wish I was through all this so I can put my life back together. Why can't I be decisive and just tell him it is over... why does that seem so terrible after all he has done?
Is there anyone out there who can help? I get so scared.
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Old 4th October 2010, 02:59 PM   #2
chosen
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Re: How do I take the final step?

Heather what a mess and how painful for you.I am so very sorry. I do think that you need to be firm in telling him to move out totally. Seeing him must be making it so much worse for you to deal with. With both the children now adults, there is no reason for you to have any contact for the time being during your seperation.How will he realise what he may loose if he is still there?
If he isnt prepared to stop seeing the other lady, then I cant see what option that you have except to seperate until he makes his mind up between you both. Do you want him back if he stops seeing her totally? Could you trust him again?
I dont think he is telling the truth about his choices, it seems that he is torn between you and her, but you are his wife and she has no buisiness trying to steal another womans husband. What is he doing asking for her ring size?

When you have been married for that long, its always hard to either seperate or end the marriage. Its like a tearing apart of two people who have been joined together and that is very painful, but the alternative seems to be that he carries on seeing her while being with you and that is equally awful and painful.
My husband and I have both had our previous marriages end after 26 years (me) and 23 years(him) and its horrible, but there is life after it, believe it or not, but it does take time of course to recover and heal and make a new life.I hope that your marriage can survive this (if that is what you want)but even if it doesnt, you will find the strength to get through it.
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Old 4th October 2010, 04:36 PM   #3
Heather
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Re: How do I take the final step?

Thanks Chosen - I just wish I could be stronger - what's wrong with me that I put up with all this? Why can't I just tell him it's over - I don't even think I could ever have him back. We have decided on 6 months separation to think things through but part of me wonders if it is just going to prolong the agony.
I am hoping that the space will help me to put myself back together a bit so that I find strength to make a final decision...even my daughter said she doesn't think it works that way!
How did you find strength to end your pain? He is due to leave tonight to go to his flat and he will be taking more of his things with him and probably won't be back for a while. I will aim to be away next time he is home I think... it is all just such a nightmare!
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Old 4th October 2010, 05:13 PM   #4
chosen
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Re: How do I take the final step?

Heather, for me and my husband we had little choice. He was divorced by his wife after she met another man, and I found out something so awful about my ex that I had to seperate for my childrens future safety. I asked my husband to leave the day I found out, and he only came back a couple more times to get things.It was heartbreaking of course as your situation is also.
I can only speak for myself, but if my husband had behaved as yours had,and refused to stop this affair, I couldnt stay, and probably couldnt have him back or trust him again, but only you know if you could do that or not.However he would have to make the decision to stop seeing the other lady first.

Good idea to be out when he comes again, and to be honest, a time of being apart may make things clearer for both of you. It will give you time and space to think and make a decision.

I'm not sure if I should say this, but I did get a lot of strength from God because I am a Christian, and He was all I had. He was my rock and he kept me from going under.
Both my parents were dead and I had no close family, but somehow you will manage to come out the otherside.
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Old 4th October 2010, 08:05 PM   #5
Heather
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Re: How do I take the final step?

Well tonight I helped him pack the car with a lot of the essentials and he has gone... there are still things he will need later and as he sat in the car saying goodbye he asked me to visit him soon... I don't know what I feel now - numb I guess. He obviously feels we will still be in touch a lot during the next 6 months, but I don't think I can do it... I need space. I don't know how to get up in a morning and keep going to work, when I really just want it all to go away. I am so afraid to really let go - I don't know if would be able to get myself back together again...I just feel I am in a big dark tunnel and idesperately need a torch!
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Old 4th October 2010, 08:19 PM   #6
chosen
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Re: How do I take the final step?

Heather, I read a book about seperation and divorce by a man called Jim Smoke, he has counselled loads and loads of people going through this. He says that the less you can see the other person, the quicker you will heal, recover and move on.
Maybe tell him that you dont want any contact unless it is vital, and allow yourself that space.
For so long you have been part of a married couple, and now you arent, and that is scary, but you WILL get through.
Its normal to feel numb at this time and it will seem so unreal.
Do you have close friends or family that can help support you?
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Old 4th October 2010, 08:32 PM   #7
Heather
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Re: How do I take the final step?

Thanks for your support Chosen, I do have lovely friends at work who offer support, I don't like to worry my dad or children who are trying to work through this themselves. My friends are angry on my behalf and can't understand why I didn't kick him out long ago when I first found out - or why I don't change the locks now. But ultimately this is still his house too.
I have never found it easy to talk about feelings - my freinds know what has happened, but I don't really talk about how I feel, they have their own lives, worries and burdens without carrying mine.
On here I know that I am talking to people who share my pain and offer advice freely day or night because they want to - not because I have trapped them in a room and whinged. To be honest I find it easier to write my feelings than say them... maybe that is where it all went wrong.
It scares me that for the first time in 12 years I really don't want to go to work and be with anyone... I thought I had got past this stage and was feeling stronger. Sorry, I'm just down I guess.
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Old 4th October 2010, 09:40 PM   #8
chosen
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Re: How do I take the final step?

Heather, I am actually like you in that I find it helpful to write things down, so carry on doing that.I did that for 2 or 3 years after my marriage suddenly ended, and I think it did help a lot to get things out. Whenever you feel overwhelmed, write your feelings down.
Its good that this forum exists, and that you feel helped by it.

You are bound to feel down, its a painful and emotional time for you. Your husband has just packed and left the house.
However, it maybe that now the uncertainty has passed a bit about whether he will leave or not, things may be able to settle slightly and you maybe able to have a chance to reflect and come to terms with what has happened. There cant be much worse that living in uncertainty, not knowing whether he will stay or go, or carry on seeing the other woman or not, and whether your marriage is over or not.

I can totally understand that you dont want to burden your children. As mums we want to protect them and not make it harder for them dont we.I expect they will be finding this hard as well.

I just want to encourage you. For ages after my marriage ended, I could see no future at all. My whole future was planned with my husband, as a wife. I never dreamt that I would ever be divorced. Eventually the fog began to lift, and after 6 years I met my now husband. I didnt think I would ever be happy again, but I am now very happy, and see a good future ahead. It takes time and patience, but there is life after a marriage ends. Be patient with yourself and kind to yourself, it wont happen over night.
Loosing a spouse like this is a bereavement, just as painful as if he had died. The only difference is that he is still walking around, but its still a deep and painful loss.

Last edited by chosen; 4th October 2010 at 09:50 PM.
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Old 6th October 2010, 01:01 PM   #9
chosen
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Re: How do I take the final step?

Hi heather
hope you are OK.
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Old 6th October 2010, 08:15 PM   #10
Heather
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Re: How do I take the final step?

Hi Chosen
Thanks for asking - I'm hanging in there!
Yesterday was really tough as my husband left on Monday evening. I helped him load the car and he asked if I would be OK then asked if I would visit him soon where he is going to be living... I was a bit non-plussed, as what I really need is space and all this messes with my head.
I know I have to find some inner strength in me somewhere but I have always assumed that any failing in anything is always of my own making and I'm finding it really hard to tell myself that he made that decision to have an affair on his own. There were other ways to deal with it - talking to me when he was unhappy might have been a start... why is it so hard to believe that I deserve better? Did I really cause all this? was I that bad a wife? I tried my best to support him in everything and bring up the children while he was away so much. Did I do something in a previous life to deserve all this? If so it must have been really bad. I am just taking one day at a time and keeping breathing... can't think much beyond that at the moment. Strange really as I was expecting to feel more relief now we are finally apart but instead there is just a chasm... maybe I have been bottling all this up for so long while my daughter has been at home and my husband has been around, it has to come out somehow.
Didn't know a body could contain so much water!
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Old 6th October 2010, 10:18 PM   #11
chosen
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Re: How do I take the final step?

Heather I dont believe in previous lives, so no, I dont believe that you have done anything to deserve this I am sure. Bad things happen to good people. Have you ever heard that saying?

I can understand that you feel it must have been somehow your fault, but honestly I have known so many people who are truly lovely people, and still their spouses were unfaithful, and in many cases left them for someone else. My dad cheated on my mum for 8 years, and she was the lovliest lady I have ever known. She adored my dad and was an amazing wife. Both of my brothers wives did the same, and again, he is such a lovely guy. My husbands ex did the same and he is the most kind, patient, easy to please, godly man I have ever known. I could go on and on.

Your husband chose to cheat, as all these other people did. That was his desision and people do cheat even if they have nice spouses. People dont have boundaries and allow themselves to get into wrong situations with the opposite sex. They break promises and lie and cheat. Faithfullness seems to be a thing that not many believe in these days unfortunately. Many people do many horrible things to each other, wehether they deserve it or not.

Dont stop the tears, they need to come out. Tears are releasing and healing. I am sure that you are right in that you have been holding it all in for ages, and its like a volcano that needs to erupt to release the tension and pressure.
.
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Old 16th October 2010, 05:52 AM   #12
1aokgal
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Re: How do I take the final step?

Dear Heather,

Congratulations you have just handed your husband over to the other woman, who will be waiting in the wings to gladly take him. You tossed him out like bad laundry. Big mistake, Heather. You let pride, hurt, and self pity blind you to the issues. There were problems in the marriage and those needed work. A man can seek comfort somewhere else with so much going on you probably lost touch with each other. Please stop telling your friends your business and do not play the victim in all this. A marriage is a partnership. You talk about the issues and don't extract revenge with the silly "6 months alone and I think it over." In 6 months he will have moved on and you will be one more divorced woman hanging out trying to find a man so you aren't lonely.

Sure did not sound to me that he was dying to jump into marriage with her! Looks like you decided you could not work on these problems. You say 6 months SPACE? You will get space while she moves right in with him. Her shoes will go right under the bed and her nightie will end up in his closet. Foolish girl! You have years of history with this man. Do you think a 6 months time you mentioned will "punish" him? You will get a huge surprise if that was the idea.

It sounds like with all those buckets of tears you care about him? Your pride more important than to realize some improved look and attitude on your end might get him 100% back into your arms?

He said, "Come visit." That is a man who regrets the lies and deception. I bet she does not look so good for the next wife on the long term. After the angry..after the tears..go put on a great outfit and go visit and bring a nightie with you. If you were a hottie with him years ago there might still be some fire there to revive. Sounds as if you folks had serious issues with illness and problems and that got in the way of the relationship between you.

It does not sound like he wants to go in another direction to me. It sounds like you not only helped him pack but you kicked him in the can as he went down the walkway. Go get him back before it is too late.

I think you will regret all that self pity and life is very long and lonely. What you have is likely far better than what is out there. It is not that easy to find a keeper and perhaps you should have kept the one you had. Maybe it is not too late to swallow some pride and invite him home for a home cooked meal and and some real affection.

Don't argue over what can't be changed (the past) ..talk about what you CAN change (the future.) If you look long and hard in the mirror you will see a woman who regrets she tossed her man out on his ear over a dalliance that you can forgive.

Ask God to remove your anger. Think about all the years he was a good man and a good husband. There might still be another 25 good years in there, don't you think?

Last edited by 1aokgal; 17th October 2010 at 12:19 AM.
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Old 4th November 2010, 11:11 PM   #13
Sal
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Re: How do I take the final step?

Goodness me! I can't believe the last posting. Your husband has had or is having an affair and is causing you hurt and pain. You can't be a doormat. He needs to respect you and if he can't then you need to move on and meet someone who loves you for who you are.
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Old 5th November 2010, 09:00 AM   #14
chosen
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Re: How do I take the final step?

[QUOTE=Sal;57854]Goodness me! I can't believe the last posting. Your husband has had or is having an affair and is causing you hurt and pain. You can't be a doormat. He needs to respect you and if he can't then you need to move on and meet someone who loves you for who you are.[/QUOTE]

Nor me, it was quite amazingly hurtful.
This man has been cheating lying and deceiving for 6 years. He started the affair at a time when his wife was deeply suffering, and needed his support. Instead he cheated and ran to the first adulterous woman with no morals that he could find.
That is devastating.If he moves in with the other woman, then that is his decision, and his mistake,and shows that he isnt ready to work on the marriage. Why is it that so many people think that men cant possible manage alone for a few months without a woman?Its sad. God will never ever bless that relationship.He needs to do ALL that he can to make ammends and restore the trust,(if that is possible) and he can do that whether they are living together or not

Heather hope you are alright. It takes time to heal and recover from such betrayal, and to need some space isnt surprising. It will enable you to take stock, think and find out what you want to do. A 6 year affair isnt going to just go away and has enormous consequenses. You can never undo what he did. If he wants the marriage to continue then the option is there for him to win you back, and repent, and earn back the trust that has been shattered. It will be hard work but its up to him.At this point, he is still cheating and is in touch with this women daily. There is no sign of repentance or of his being prepared to stop this affair. While this is carrying on, the marriage cant be restored or repaired or worked on.

Many cannot continue in the marriage after such betrayal, a few do, we are all different. You need time to find out what you want to do.

Last edited by chosen; 5th November 2010 at 02:54 PM.
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Old 5th November 2010, 09:58 AM   #15
1aokgal
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Re: How do I take the final step?

Dear Heather..

A marriage of 22 years with children and shared history where there is still love can be salvaged. That is the meaning in the mrriage of "joined by God" and it isn't about paying someone back for hurt he has given you. It is obvious to me you still love this man. I do not see in your posts where he was delighted to leave his wife and family. Rather he said he wanted to be with someone who loved him and who wanted to be with him. Where have you been in the last years? Maybe you were both pre-occupied with a busy household, children and problems which dims the youthful glow in the eyes and the passion in a marriage. A person can go outside of the marriage when there is loneliness within it.

It seems to me you both grew apart. I think perhaps your relationship was no longer of primary importance. It might also be about some mid life crisis a man sometimes experiences when he thinks no one needs him or desires him. Whatever happened there might still be time to find the two of you again. That is something that could be worked out in counselling between the two of you. I beleive it is worthwhile to fight to keep what belongs to you. You seem depressed, resigned and angry. That is not the same thing as wishing your freedom from a marriage.

From what you post I see a wife who pushed the man out the door in anger and hurt. Maybe that is a great mistake? I say, rethink the issue and see if there is still enough love to forgive and try again.

It is easy for others to give advice to kick a husband to the curb for missteps. They do not deal with your pain of loss and the sadness of your children for these next holidays or the years ahead. They see their security and family home in chaos. Adultery is not the problem. It is a SYMPTOM of the problem. What was the problem? Do you know or would you like to find out what is the real underlying reason this happened? There is nothing wrong with you. It is not that you made a mistake. It is about time and what the years can cause between two people to erode a marriage.

It is easier to put garbage behind with someone you love, even with bruises, than it is to find a good man eager to make committment in todays' world. A marriage is worth saving if you can.

Last edited by 1aokgal; 5th November 2010 at 10:16 AM.
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