When the affair turns into a relationship
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Coping with Infidelity Relationship recovery from the destructiveness of infidelity.

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Old 06-21-2010, 01:38 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default When the affair turns into a relationship

I'm hoping some of you out there might be able to offer some advice on this one. I will try to be brief.

Last September, I discovered my wife had been having an affair for 5 months. Looking back over the summer (it was horrible), I should have suspected it, but I just couldn't make myself belief she could do that to me.

Anyway, I discovered it, confronted her, and it was bad. She was in deep and said she loved him. I essentially had to force them to stop - we have a 9 year-old daughter and I was to be damned for them to continue any longer. We live in a small town and the affair partner was a teacher of my daughter - no way was this affair going to be discovered by the greater community and then it get to my daughter, shame all of us etc.

So it ended and we went through 6 months of hell where we both knew deep down that too much had happened. I didn't tell any of my family and she didn't tell hers. I wanted badly to expose it to family, but just decided it could only potentially harm my daughter if I did.

In February, we legally separated. Although I knew we were done, I was still reluctant. After all that had happened, I still cared for her and didn't want to break our family apart. Nonetheless, she wasn't very open to counseling or working on things - as I mentioned, she got in deep with this guy and I don't think she ever let go of the idea of being with him again.

So - here I am today, riding that roller coaster that so many people talk about. Our separation has been quite cordial and we've been doing things in the very best interests of our daughter (I'm trying to keep her as my focus and reason to keep this to myself).

However - here's my most recent kicker. Soon after our legal separation, she began seeing him again. Am I surprised? Not really. But I was pissed off because I hadn't moved out yet and it was just more lying/deceit/disrespect. I hadn't nearly enough time to get over the shock of all of this and now this just felt like their thing was put "on hold" until I was moved aside.

And now she has just very recently gone on a first open date and it appears that an actual relationship will ensue. Despite her being very remorseful, and being given word that he is also remorseful and wants to be able to work with me in the future if they have a serious relationship.

I have tried to stay on the high road with all of this. And I have decided at various times that I would do my best to find a way to come to some kind of reconciliation with this guy if they do develop a real relationship - only because I want to protect my daughter from conflict/confusion/etc.. She's certainly worth it.

But now I find myself struggling with it as I am dealing with a new place, reduced income, being alone and the intense anger and resentment that comes with having someone intrude into your family like this. I am queasy at the idea that I might have to be in the same space as this guy, that he might become a part of my daughter's life. He's a surprisingly respectable community member, but it doesn't matter much to me. To me, he represents a terrible, terrible time in my life and because of his lack of respect, our marriage received the final nail in the coffin so to speak. And all of it affects my daughter - if they had of been discovered and the affair exposed, it could have been horrible for my family.

Sorry - I promised to not be long-winded.

How do I do this? How do I stay on the high road and move forward? I will still be in situations where I will be with her family on occasions as we are very close - how do I keep pretending? Does it get easier? harder?

All of this would have been easier if she would have moved on with someone else. Now I am going to be force-fed the affair partner - gross.

Just looking for insights, experiences, points of view, suggestions, etc..

Thanks.
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Old 06-21-2010, 02:56 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: When the affair turns into a relationship

You definitely need to let the anger out!..screw the high road..what is going to happen later, is all those pent up emotions are going to explode on someone you didn't mean them to, so let everyone know, trust me, you won't be the one feeling the shame, they will, do you want your daughter to think you didn't care?..and that later it will be 'ok' and there is no consequence?
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Old 06-21-2010, 03:23 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: When the affair turns into a relationship

It appears to me that your wife is having her cake and eating it to. You should stand up for your family and fight for them!!! What makes you think your 9 year old doesn't know something is up? In my situation, my 5 year old knew something was going on, and I tried very hard to protect her from seeing what was going on with her parents, but she knew anyway. If that dude is so respected in the community then he shouldn't mind the truth being told!!! And who knows, by telling everyone near and dear to all of you, and if it is such a small community he might be so shunned in the community and have to move elsewhere to work and live. And then you could get your family back and work on it. They say your marriage will survive your W anger and not another man. And that is the truth!!! My W was sooooo mad you wouldn't believe how scary she was at times, but telling people worked, because it bursted their bubble and put the pressure on them. And now my W is back and we are getting along really well!!

So do what you want, but by taking the high road and not doing anything isn't really taking the high road. And your 9 year old will see that later on in life...
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Old 06-21-2010, 03:28 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: When the affair turns into a relationship

I agree with showtime. I have exposed my H affair to about 30 people including family, mutual friends and co workers(he is laid off but not because of the affair). I have not heard much from most of them but at least the truth is out there. H filed for divorce, still denies the affair and I can't really tell now if the OW is still in the picture or not. But at the end of the day even if I end up divorced at least I will know I have tried to do my best to save my marriage. Remember everyone's circumstances are little bit different and yes they all get mad for exposing. I know my H is mad but he has not shown that anger directly to me(because he is guilty like hell).

You have 50/50 chance either way. But I would still go with the exposure.
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Old 06-21-2010, 03:39 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: When the affair turns into a relationship

I'm glad I decided to look at these posts..I decided I'm going to let everyone know, co-workers, friends, whomever about my wife's affair..she has been trying to hide things to make it seem like everything is OK or it is my fault..Her work might not like it and she definitely will hate me, but she already doesn't love me.
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Old 06-21-2010, 04:00 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: When the affair turns into a relationship

I can certainly understand your desire to protect your daughter but I would ask one question. If your wife proceeds with a life with him do you want you daughter to grow up believing he is a great guy with high morals, when in fact he is a cheat, a home wrecker and a scum ball??? Let the truth get out there. He will very likely lose his job and he should.
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Old 06-21-2010, 04:28 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: When the affair turns into a relationship

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Originally Posted by movingforward View Post
I'm hoping some of you out there might be able to offer some advice on this one. I will try to be brief.

Last September, I discovered my wife had been having an affair for 5 months. Looking back over the summer (it was horrible), I should have suspected it, but I just couldn't make myself belief she could do that to me.

Anyway, I discovered it, confronted her, and it was bad. She was in deep and said she loved him. I essentially had to force them to stop - we have a 9 year-old daughter and I was to be damned for them to continue any longer. We live in a small town and the affair partner was a teacher of my daughter - no way was this affair going to be discovered by the greater community and then it get to my daughter, shame all of us etc.

So it ended and we went through 6 months of hell where we both knew deep down that too much had happened. I didn't tell any of my family and she didn't tell hers. I wanted badly to expose it to family, but just decided it could only potentially harm my daughter if I did.

In February, we legally separated. Although I knew we were done, I was still reluctant. After all that had happened, I still cared for her and didn't want to break our family apart. Nonetheless, she wasn't very open to counseling or working on things - as I mentioned, she got in deep with this guy and I don't think she ever let go of the idea of being with him again.

So - here I am today, riding that roller coaster that so many people talk about. Our separation has been quite cordial and we've been doing things in the very best interests of our daughter (I'm trying to keep her as my focus and reason to keep this to myself).

However - here's my most recent kicker. Soon after our legal separation, she began seeing him again. Am I surprised? Not really. But I was pissed off because I hadn't moved out yet and it was just more lying/deceit/disrespect. I hadn't nearly enough time to get over the shock of all of this and now this just felt like their thing was put "on hold" until I was moved aside.

And now she has just very recently gone on a first open date and it appears that an actual relationship will ensue. Despite her being very remorseful, and being given word that he is also remorseful and wants to be able to work with me in the future if they have a serious relationship.

I have tried to stay on the high road with all of this. And I have decided at various times that I would do my best to find a way to come to some kind of reconciliation with this guy if they do develop a real relationship - only because I want to protect my daughter from conflict/confusion/etc.. She's certainly worth it.

But now I find myself struggling with it as I am dealing with a new place, reduced income, being alone and the intense anger and resentment that comes with having someone intrude into your family like this. I am queasy at the idea that I might have to be in the same space as this guy, that he might become a part of my daughter's life. He's a surprisingly respectable community member, but it doesn't matter much to me. To me, he represents a terrible, terrible time in my life and because of his lack of respect, our marriage received the final nail in the coffin so to speak. And all of it affects my daughter - if they had of been discovered and the affair exposed, it could have been horrible for my family.

Sorry - I promised to not be long-winded.

How do I do this? How do I stay on the high road and move forward? I will still be in situations where I will be with her family on occasions as we are very close - how do I keep pretending? Does it get easier? harder?

All of this would have been easier if she would have moved on with someone else. Now I am going to be force-fed the affair partner - gross.

Just looking for insights, experiences, points of view, suggestions, etc..

Thanks.
my friend , dont pretend anything , expose your wife & that other man to each & everyone they respect or matter to them . Dont even think of ever being on talking terms with these cheaters apart from what might be necessary regarding your daughter with your wife . Thats it
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Old 06-22-2010, 06:19 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: When the affair turns into a relationship

Thanks for all of your responses - much appreciated. I do feel at times lie exposing it, but feel that time may have passed. And I don't know that exposing it helps my daughter or anyone for that matter - you just have all eyes upon all of you in a small town and it sticks around forever. I knew some people that had an affair exposed years ago and people still go on about it and make judgments when the people involved have moved on some time ago.

I also may not have made myself clear: the relationship is is over, there's no saving my family at this point. And even if I thought it could be saved, I'm not sure I could have done it - there was just too much damage done to move past. And they are remorseful believe it or not and know that what they have done is wrong.

So I guess what I'm really looking for is words from anyone who might have had experience in a situation where they may have to "work" with the affair partner. No one knows what will happen at this point but I see a time in the future where they become seriously involved and because of my daughter, I will be in a situation where I cannot ignore him - and may have to somehow come to terms/forgive. If not, the only person that will suffer is my daughter.

Again thanks everyone for the advice, but I'm wondering if someone out there is in or has been in my situation?
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Old 06-22-2010, 06:49 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: When the affair turns into a relationship

Almost everyone on this site has been where you are or are somewhere on your timeline. Is it fair to say that you have decided to move on? That you have no intention of trying to recover? Are you looking to start a new relationship?
If you would take her back if things changed then you need to take a good look at how affairs begin and end. Did you know that nearly all of them die a naturla death sometime between 6 and 18 months after exposure. So now your wife is dating. Real life sets in. He will no longer be the perfect man. He was a fantasy man and you were an ordinary man. You were in a difficult situation by her continuing the affair or contact after you found out. There was little chance of improvement as you moved along from September.
She hasn't filed for divorce only separation. Have you asked yourself "Why not?". This has been a difficult time for you. But there is hope. If you want to have a good handle on your chances you need to do some serious reading. Ask more questions. Can I assume that the greatest pain has passed? You are thinking quite rationally now. Take advantage of that. Ask direct questions of Affaircare and others. This site is about optimism. Stay strong.
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Old 06-22-2010, 10:35 AM   #10 (permalink)
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iamnottheonlyone - thanks for your post - it's very helpful.

I think I have to move on and I think I do want to move on - she has not shown any indication of trying to recover and I think I would like to start a new relationship. It's just so hard to move on when you're still sort of in shock and your wife has chosen to continue to see this person.

I have read sooooooo much about affairs, how they start and end. And yes - they fit the mold to a tee. Started during a bad time in our marriage and a stressful time in her life, he became this wonderful escape, a promise of something new and different, without the current baggage that comes with a long-term relationship. And yet even though all of this has been presented to her and they both know that there is no worse way to start a relationship (most built on affairs fail), they continue.

It's disturbing, but I think I have seen enough writing on the wall that she is no longer available to me. Maybe once the haze has worn off, she will have immense regrets, but I can't live my life that way. I have to move on, it's too painful to dwell.

As I said my concern moving forward is whether or not he becomes part of my life and that is distressing.

Thanks for the support - it helps a lot.
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Old 06-22-2010, 12:00 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Obviously there are different levels of hurt in this, the first was finding out about the affair, either by accident or word of mouth, and that goes for anyone who has had/has a spouse in one or suspected but had no proof, that hurt is powerful and affects the ego and self confidence, and takes time to just get to where you can function, then comes the separation hurt if initiated by the AS, now that hurt is different, it's a whirlwind of wonder, like what are they doing is he/she with the OM/OW, why are we separating, is it to ponder and work on the R , because 9 out of 10 times the spouse who is in the A then wants 'space' will never be honest why they even want space, most times these 2 'hurt scenarios' over lap each other, so now you are dealing with 2 emotions, then comes the 3rd hurt, spouse wants a divorce, this hurt is different, we have not yet absorbed the first 2, now we face finality, and rather quickly, we can't even believe the 3rd one is even real, we ask "who is this person?"..I only know the affects on emotions of these scenarios, I haven't figured out the cure..but something tells me it will be a long time before I do, especially when kids are involved.
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Old 06-22-2010, 12:58 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Yes - the levels/layers of hurt are many and it just keeps coming. And each level can fade some and come back with a vengeance. And yes, you never get enough time to allow the first hurt to be conquered before the next rolls along. It's truly life-altering.

And yes - boy o boy does the finding out ever destroy ego and confidence. I barely remember the first couple of weeks after finding out. I shouldn't have been at work - I was a danger to myself and people around me.

And yes - add a child into the mix and the complexity of the pain increases. You have to 'suck it up' even more because you must remain available to your kid(s), no matter how bad you feel.

Thanks 2daughters.
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Old 06-22-2010, 12:59 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I went from mid march 2010 from getting a proof of his affair to mid april 2010 of him asking for divorce(I was willing to go the separation way but he was not). In between you deal with finding out, confronting, denial(on his part and still does), to him asking for divorce. All within a month more or less. I am surprised I am still alive. And 2Daughters is right, when there are kids involved it's so hard to move on because you still need to see/talk to your WS.
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Old 06-22-2010, 01:30 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I think I have to move on and I think I do want to move on - she has not shown any indication of trying to recover
That is because she never stopped having an affair with him; she INTENDED to divorce you, after pretending to reconcile, so that she could have him legitimately. You've been had.

IMO, the high road is to NOT hide what they did. You are teaching your daughter - and if she doesn't already know, she WILL - that it's ok to cheat and if you are cheated on you just give up and lose.

And I for sure would get him fired. Small town or not, apparently YOU are the only parent who can teach your daughter morals.
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Old 06-22-2010, 02:28 PM   #15 (permalink)
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all of us feel the hurt at maximum level to us, I wanted to add, at least what I see from their 'clouded' perspective anyway is, they need the 'space' to somehow lessen the guilt from the affair(we're not really together anymore so it's okay now), I guess saying "your the best father to our daughters" was her way of 'comforting?" me before leaving..then once apart, they must still feel some sort of guilt because, I suddenly became less of a 'perfect' dad in her eyes and I really figured it out why in my case..all the 'little' things I did, everyday, get them up for school, make breafast, make and pack lunches and share the driving to school all before work..all of a sudden she must do that all the time..she actually thought we would be 'friends' after she left and I would drop any and all unchecked emotions and 'baby sit' while she had to go away on 'business'..oh I did at the beginning, but got wise and stopped, so now 'I don't care about my kids' to her..all the while 'reassuring' me, my girls are fine and we don't have to explain anything to them..in the meantime, the 2 mos we've been separated she has left on 'vacations' for 3,3, and 5 days, without a care about the separation anxiety my 9 yr old is going through..maybe I'm the 'bad' guy since I haven't gotten used to driving to my daughters to give them a kiss goodnight.
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