My wife thinks she is in love with a co-worker - Page 3 - Talk About Marriage
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post #31 of 5067 (permalink) Old 07-11-2015, 07:25 PM
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Re: My wife thinks she is in love with a co-worker

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Thank you guys for all of these comments. I am going to continue to post here. The JLD post of Reconciliation with a hardened wife (link above) was the absolute best thing I've read and I'm not even a believer in a specific God. I found comfort in that article and JLD I thank you for posting it. We are actually going to see a Marriage Councilor tonight and honestly while it's 10 years overdue, at the same time it's not too late. Despite all of the instruction to act hard and fast with a lawyer, I am going to chose to generate love between myself and my wife. Roll your eyes, go ahead. Maybe your right. I love my wife.
I tried to nice my wayward husband back when I first found out about his OW. Took full responsibility for his cheating at first, even apologized to him for being the sh!tty wife he never once told me I was until after I found out. Didn't work. Ended up hating myself for it. Had I told everyone the truth as soon as I found out about it, I would have at least ended that affair. They all know the truth now and are disgusted by his behavior and have told him so, but it's too late. I didn't find TAM in time. Their bond just got stronger because I let it.

I hope your wife is truly committed to reconciling with you. But I'll say again that she seems unsure of the AP's long-term intentions. If she doesn't tell you who he is, and if she is not willing to go 100% No Contact with him, you have an underground affair on your hands. She will continue to see him but will just get sneakier about it. You will be her Plan B, in case he doesn't work out because he chooses to stay with his wife or fiancée or partner, or because he's much younger and really wasn't looking for a long-term commitment with a divorced woman with kids.

I hope I'm wrong. But please make sure you know exactly who he is, what his story is, and that you get assurance there is absolutely no further contact. Any counselor worth their salt will advise the same. If you're unwilling to demand this of her, or if you're willing to accept her not giving you this, you're fooling yourself. And jeopardizing your kids' and your own future.

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post #32 of 5067 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 12:20 AM
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Re: My wife thinks she is in love with a co-worker

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The strong move right now is to immediately file for divorce. And expose widely to her family and respected friends. This has the highest probability of breaking her affair.

Also, you stand to get the best custody and monetary settlement from a divorce if you do it quickly. If she doesn't come out of the fog, and if the divorce goes through quickly, she is likely to give in easily.

You can always give her more than the court requires, if you want. So if you get a really good settlement now you can always give more later. But if you get screwed in court, you can never give less!
This.

If you want her back, YOU MUST EXPOSE the affair to her parents, her siblings, her best friend, and her pastor, if applicable. She will NEVER STOP CHEATING if you don't expose.

That's not a guarantee that she will come back to you, but the single best chance to stop an affair is to shine light on it to her VIPs, the people whose respect she craves. Seeing them KNOWING what she's doing is the strongest way to stop it.

The second strongest way to stop it is to immediately file, REFUSE to be her 'friend,' and let her see you cutting off all ties with her; i.e., kicking her out in the dust. A wakeup call, if you will.
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post #33 of 5067 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 12:23 AM
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Re: My wife thinks she is in love with a co-worker

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Originally Posted by Happilymarried25 View Post
Most of the people on this board say to anyone who's spouse has an affair to a 180 and divorce so don't be too surprised at the responses. I think your marriage can be saved especially since you admit you haven't been a good husband and want to change to keep your family together.

It won't work unless she wants it to work and the first step is for her to stop seeing this man.
Which is why you MUST expose the affair. She will never give him up unless staying with him brings her too much grief and shame.

And please understand most women can love only one man at a time. She gave up on you, found a 'new' man who she could love, and THEN committed to leaving you. Remember that.

For her to then give up on HIM, she has to have a reason.
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post #34 of 5067 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 04:45 PM Thread Starter
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Re: My wife thinks she is in love with a co-worker

Hi everybody. Thanks for the communication. Some of it is still confusing to me, honestly. Some of it I read and I hate to read it. I feel like I am in a unique situation. I feel like her and I have always connected on a higher level, which is really narcissistic. If I read those last two sentences, not knowing the nuances or dynamics of the situation, I would be the first person saying "YOU ARE A DAMN FOOL".

I have really been consistently a shi**y partner for years, have taken her for granted for years. She has been my rock for years and I totally went about life assuming she would always be there and her "heart would never harden" to me. Some of you are really hard on her, and while I understand it from an outsiders perspective, I really let it happen. Unhappily married, tells her husband 100 different ways, he doesnt listen/doesnt think she's serious, she starts confiding in a co-worker and they start connecting. She starts to think there may be happiness elsewhere (because there's no happiness here), she makes a play for the guy, and it's reciprocated. Boom. I had it coming.

My reaction to this (i found out about the physical part of the affair less than an house after it happened) after the initial shock and sadness, I immediately started to understand that I was really a horrible husband. She has a catalogue of crappy behavior on my part, almost all of it just nitpicky poor bedside manner, ball busting, general lack of compassion and kindness. While I may have been loyal and worked hard for the family and actually have an unbelievable love for this woman, I never showed it for reasons I hope to get to the bottom to.

Anyway, I feel that I have done some tremendous things this week and if there was a perfect way to react, to demonstrate real remorse, to demonstrate real love for this woman, to do exactly the right things to demonstrate that I can in fact be humbled to my knees and almost be reborn, I have done it. I'm very proud of how I have reacted to all of this so far, with a compassion that I have chosen not to demonstrate in a very long time. I have spent this entire week taking stock of all the ways and habits that have led me to fail this woman, from being overworked to always reacting to her cry's by ether not listening to her, being in denial about what she was asking for, or telling her she was to blame for whatever trival issue we were arguing about. I also began to recognize that if I really wanted to be a better man, I was going to need to humble myself to some people close to me by basically telling them that I was a poor husband and sometimes just a real jerk in general and opening up to people in a way I never have, in hopes that some of the right people would care enough to be good council to me and/or at least cheer me on as I begin this quest to be a better man. I am actually trying to look at this act of her cheating and falling for another man as a blessing. I feel that if she never did this, if this never happened, she would have went the rest of her life being unfulfilled, as by simply asking me to change wouldnt have been enough (because it wasnt in the past). It also enabled me to stop the the zombie like life I was living; work, work, work, while she was the homemakers/roommate/mother of my children/sex partner and REALLY take a moment (so far a week) and take an assesment of my 43 years on the planet, my level of happiness, and what I ultimately wanted in the end. I heard a term sometime ago that nobody on their deathbed says that they wish they could have worked harder, and even though it's not new to me, I've been thinking about that a lot. I complain to my wife about my life passing before my eyes, about how times is flying faster and faster, yet I can spend literally 14 hours a day working more often than not. I hope through all of this you can at least understand the underlinings of why it went down the way it did. And you can say she had a real crummy way of going about it, but any other way wouldnt have jolted me the way this has jolted me. No other way would have cut this deep.

We went to one session of marriage therapy, and I came out of it with a lot of hope for myself specifically. I felt we were fortunate enough to find a therapist who we'd think was good for us, and so far I feel like we have. She goes to see him alone tomorrow and I go alone on Wednesday. There are some emotional hangups I've had for my whole life that I think contibute to my creating distance on purpose between myself and those I love the most. I am going to pay $270 a session to get to the bottom of it

Another thing that has happened is that my wife and I have existed with her being a life long believer in God and follower of her faith, and I am simply agnostic. I have decided this week that I am going to go to church with her and the kids starting next week; not because I'm going to cult myself into believing in God, but because there is a community of people there that are actually HER rock, while she was MY rock. I think I can look past all the God in heaven, everybody in white robes floating around with loved ones in a state of forever bliss and take out of it the support she gets. My whole life right now is surrounded by work/business relationships, a few lifelong friends, and my wife. I keep my circle small and I dont think that's been to my benefit.

We actually went on a date last night, initiated by me and she was cool with it. We spoke about our issues on our way to visit friends of ours who's marriage we admire and were looking for some inspiration, then went to a bar and saw a band, had a few drinks and laughs amd it was really natural and good and amazing that we are a week removed from such a heavy event. I called my friend this morning who we saw last night and told him what was happening, and he revealed to me that him and his wife dealt with strangely similar issues (with his wife in my role) and just finished two straight years marriage counciling. I was kind of blown away by this and it further solidified the idea that I need to not be so private about the s*it in my life, as nobody is perfect.

Meanwhile, my wife wants me to continue doing what I am doing but not obsess over it (as in, not write a novel on the Talkaboutmarriage website) and just focus on my plan. But, at the same time, she is strong in her feelings for this new man and while she has promised that she will cut out the physical part of their relationship, she wants to continue the communciation with him. Therein lies the current, most obvious problem with all of this. It's a roadblock in our rebuilding this thing but she steadfastly maintains that while I am doing all the right things and owning up to all of my past jerkiness and "coming to Jesus" (sorta), me losing her heart once and for all wasnt just a threat. If she had divorce papers right now, she'd sign them. She says she's thought it all the way through and every consequence be damned. And even with all of that, I am going to sit here and ride this out and continue to reverse the curse and call her a saint.

So, there's the latest. I'm sure you've never quite heard anything like it, but there is nobody like the two of us. We both agree we were made for each other.

Last edited by gridcom; 07-12-2015 at 04:59 PM.
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post #35 of 5067 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 05:00 PM
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Re: My wife thinks she is in love with a co-worker

Dude, no matter how much you want to take blame for your contribution to her cheating, once she DOES cheat, there is only one thing left to discuss: "I will not share my wife with another man."

And btw, you are NOT in a unique situation. She's a garden variety cheater and you're a garden variety doormat afraid to stand up for yourself. For every 5 men who come here with a cheating wife, at least 4 give the same story as you. All that telling yourself (and us) that you're unique and it will work out because you're unique will get you is divorced.
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post #36 of 5067 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 05:02 PM
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Re: My wife thinks she is in love with a co-worker

You're heading for a fall. I feel bad for you.
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post #37 of 5067 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 05:04 PM
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Re: My wife thinks she is in love with a co-worker

I understand your feeling a good deal to blame, when you say she told you many times how unhappy she was in the marriage, and you ignored that.

However, her still communicating with this man is very dangerous. It's quite possible she will continue being physical with him, but will just get better at hiding it from you. She will definitely maintain her emotional bond with him, which is a big part of the equation.

You've made your mind up that you're going to nice her back and share her with an OM, and it doesn't seem that anything anyone here tells you will dissuade you. As NoChoice would say, and I don't mean this facetiously, I wish you good fortune.
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post #38 of 5067 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 05:13 PM Thread Starter
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Re: My wife thinks she is in love with a co-worker

Yeah, I think I have decided that I would eat the paint emotionally and financially for the even 10% chance that my kids don't have to go through any of this. I'm not expecting any of you to mince words. That's why I am here
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post #39 of 5067 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 05:17 PM
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Re: My wife thinks she is in love with a co-worker

I'm going to offer another angle here. The tendency here on TAM is to rip a cheater to shreds with little regard for anything else. Especially if that cheater is a woman.

It is true that you can't address anything while the other guy is around, you have a history full of resentment that he doesn't have to compete with.
And she is making a poor choice here, the man likely won't last. But she may know that and may have decided that either way she's made enough effort for this marriage.


But affair aside, why should your wife believe you? It's only when she's dumping you that all of a sudden you are that concerned about her, which comes across as self serving. As your wife her happiness wasn't that important to you but now that your life is impacted all of a sudden you care. You're doing this for you, not her.

Let's say you get her out of this, why would she believe this isn't completely self serving on your part? That's something that will need to be overcome.
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post #40 of 5067 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 05:20 PM
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Re: My wife thinks she is in love with a co-worker

btw, I fully agree with you that you need to look at how you messed up the marriage. And I always TELL BSs to look at their stuff. And you SHOULD be working on yourself no matter what.

BUT

Only after they have gotten the OM out of the picture. Because basically what you are saying is you want to show her how incredible you can be and then say 'pick me,' because she will - at the same time - be getting the same dance from the OM.

The ONLY way I have ever seen your plan work is if the OM just picked her for an easy lay and he has no intention of being serious with her and he eventually proves that to her and treats her like dirt, so she comes running back to you, seeing how she has no one else. And if that happens, you will have a broken shell of a shameful woman, not your former wife. So...do you even KNOW about this guy?

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post #41 of 5067 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 05:30 PM
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Re: My wife thinks she is in love with a co-worker

No matter who's to blame, you won't fix your relationship with the third person in it. I understand you feel a lot to blame for where things have gone and yes you should work on yourself. That being said, she's being a jerk too and she knows it. You can't let her off of the hook for her part else there will be consequences. The direction you're going now is very dangerous. It usually makes the third person seeming more attractive rather than you. I hope you're the exception.
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post #42 of 5067 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 05:34 PM Thread Starter
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Re: My wife thinks she is in love with a co-worker

Lifeistooshort thank you for that. I think there is validity in what you are saying, certainly. I'm not going to argue that I am not doing this for me, as well. Obviously I dont want to live on the other side of town, in a studio apt scrolling through match.com or tinder at 43 years old shacking up with other woman who are damaged and laying next to them at night wishing I didnt blow it with my one true love. No denying that. I've told her that her happiness is what I am after and if that divorce is the end result, then I will swallow it (with a whole heaping of remorse) and do my best to start my life over. Not to repeat myself, but I do feel terrible in my role here and feel like I owe it to the both of us and to our children to do my best to overcome the shortcomings that have been prevalent in my life for quite some time. A lot of it is functional. Stop working at 7pm, close the computer, go be part of the family events for the evening. Create distance between "work mode" (frantic) and "home mode". My job is intense and I also work from home in an office away from the family. The therapist we talked to had me watch The Great Santini, a movie about a guy who cant seperate his work from home to the detriment of his family relationship. Second, seek guidance from outside forces to be a better man. Until this week, I really walked alone. Nobody knew much of anything about the family dynamic here and I think that between family and friends and me asking them to guide me and watch me and check in on me, I think that is something positive.

Third, embrace the community, especially the people at her church where she draws a large influence. What's the worst that can happen? Fourth, and definitely most importantly, seek professional help, both as a couple and as an individual.

Either way, become a better man. If it saves my family, great. If it still costs me my wife, but I make some changes, still a silver lining.

Bottom line, though, husbands and wives shouldnt give up on a marriage so easy. The alternative here is to "walk away with my head held high" and let me tell you...if I walk away my head is not going to be held high.
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post #43 of 5067 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 05:41 PM
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Re: My wife thinks she is in love with a co-worker

Gridcom, you are doing very well. So happy you are strong enough to be honest with yourself and take responsibility for your past actions. It sounds like you are growing already.

And I am happy to hear you are in counseling. You will have personalized guidance as you work to re-earn your wife's trust. It might be good to show your counselor that link.

Have you spent any more time browsing the ultimatehusband.com website? They have very helpful articles. I wish there were a forum there. There really is a need for humble, mature men to help those who are seeking wisdom.

If I were you, I would continue on the path you are on. Your continued work on yourself, and sincerity and humility before your wife, are eventually going to earn her trust. Just be patient. I believe you will be successful.

One of the deepest feminine pleasures is when a man stands full, present, and unreactive in the midst of his woman's emotional storms. When he stays present with her, and loves her through the layers of wildness and closure, then she feels his trustability, and she can relax. -- David Deida, The Way of the Superior Man
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post #44 of 5067 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 05:46 PM
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Re: My wife thinks she is in love with a co-worker

So...is your therapist telling you that you are like the father in The Great Santini? In terms of abusive behavior?
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post #45 of 5067 (permalink) Old 07-12-2015, 05:48 PM Thread Starter
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Re: My wife thinks she is in love with a co-worker

jld, I did show the councilor the link! I emailed it to him right at the end of our first visit.
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