Re: Found Out Husband Had an Affair
My situation was very similar to yours. My husband had what he claimed was just an emotional affair, but in reality it's highly likely the affair had become physical. This was 4.5 years ago now. Like you, I could not even fathom divorce. I was so emotional, hysterically begging him to stay with me. Like your husband, mine said that he wanted to leave me. He didn't specifically say it was for the OW but of course that was what he was thinking at the time. We have one child. I work and would have done okay financially if we split. Especially with child support too. But the overwhelming emotions I felt at that time, wow, I was so blinded.
He decided he needed a weekend away to think. He went to see a college friend and his wife out of state. That I can verify, it wasn't to see the OW. He came back and told me "okay, let's give it a try." Wow, what a ringing endorsement of our 10 year marriage at that point. I went to IC, but he refused MC or IC. He supposedly went no contact with the OW, but I was not privy to that phone call. I felt such relief though, such amazing relief that he had "picked me."
The OW was not a direct coworker, but in his line of work and someone he could run into at meetings. I got access to his work email and phone. In the following years I saw that OW had called him at least twice at work. When I confronted on this, he said they were just hang up calls. She also wrote him one email referring a client. That's what I know.
He has since articulated, once, maybe twice, that that whole incident was the worst mistake of his life. And he has said things like "I'm so happy we're all together" (meaning with our child too) quite often. But other than that, he does not want to revisit the affair at all. Rugswept. He has generally treated me well, compliments me, says he loves me, but he works very long hours and is not home a lot. He also at times can have a temper and mood swings (pre-dated the affair), and as a result can be a verbally abusive jerk.
Long story short, like another poster (Bad Memory I think) said here, the relief you feel from having him "choose" to stay dissipates. Then I realized "what the [blank] just happened?", but he was way into insisting on rugsweeping at that point. That's when resentment sets in. The resentment has become a part of who I am. Yet, like you, I see my husband's good qualities as well and have been weighing the good versus the bad this whole time. Part of me thinks it would be unfair for me, after all this time, to just say "you know what, I can't get over what you did." That makes me wish I had ended it at the time.
For me, our marriage has not recovered and never will. Like other TAM members in "false" reconciliations, I have hung in there. Maybe for our child, maybe out of fear. I don't know. Part of me thinks I'm just waiting till our child is grown. Part of me thinks I will catch him in another affair, giving me a "better" reason to end it than I just can't get over what happened in the past. I know that's crazy.
I just wanted to share this with you so you can see what it looks like when a marriage limps along. Like another poster (Deidre) said about some betrayed spouses, I have learned a lot about myself during this period, but obviously I am still very much conflicted. And my husband got away with something with no consequence.
I wish you all the best.