I have been married for 13 years to a beautiful woman and we have 3 amazing children. Like all marriages, we've had our ups and downs. For awhile now, it's been mostly downs.
About 4 years ago, I started playing an online game. At first I played whenever I could, just for fun, and it was completely unscheduled. I'd hop on whenever nothing else was going on. Eventually, I made friends and started to play at scheduled times when they'd be online as well. This group played 4 nights a week from 6-10. I get home from work at 4, so I'd hang out with the family, have dinner and then get online until 10. The kids would be in bed by then, and my wife would be getting ready.
On the 3 nights I wasn't playing, I would spend the entire time with my family. I do not go out with the guys. I don't drink. I'd be home, spending time with them, either games, TV or just whatever.
My wife would come to me and say that she needed my attention, that she hated the game and wanted me to spend more time with her. I'd tell her that I'd be done soon, but I'd still finish up before getting offline. A couple of times, she came into my office (at home) in her bathrobe, opened it up to show that she was wearing nothing underneath, and asked me to come to bed with her. Again, I'd say, OK, just a few more minutes.
I know. That is stupid and horrible. I could see that it hurt her, and I honestly did care about her. I just didn't see how much it hurt at the time. Overall, the 4 nights a week lasted about a year or a little more.
I saw her withdrawing from me, going out with her friends more, dancing, bars, being away from home more. I slowed my gaming down to 3 nights a week. This also lasted about a year.
I could still see that she was unhappy, but she would no longer come in and ask me to come to bed with her. She wouldn't bring up the game. She started to become pretty cold.
At that time, she was doing Zumba 1 night a week and band practice another night. I really wanted to spend more time with her, to rekindle that flame we once had. I then slowed my gaming down to only the nights that she would already be gone. By this time, I had realized that she felt abandoned, and I really do love my wife. I wanted to spend all my time with her.
I still felt her withdrawing, even though I only played while she was gone. She stopped going to Zumba, and started going to band practice only every other week or so. So, I stopped playing the game at any scheduled time. I would play, but only when she was gone. As soon as she walked in, I would log off. I would spend as much time as possible with her. I'd tell her repeatedly that I love her. I'd hug her, kiss her, take her out on dates. I'd ask her to spend time with me, but she'd complain that all we'd do is watch TV. We don't have a ton of extra money, so I'd ask her what else did she want to do? I never really got an answer.
I would tell her I love her, and get dead silence in return. Sometimes an "ok" or "me too," but often, just silence. We'd fight (never physical) pretty frequently, and always in our room, away from the kids. I'd be telling her that I need her to show love to me, and she'd tell me that I have to lose weight. She has become very health conscious lately, eating veggies and lean meats and exercising constantly.
She started going to a friends house 2-4 times a week to exercise. She'd never eat meals with the family. I'd have to make dinner for me and the kids, and she'd make her dinner after we started eating. I told her that I wanted her to eat with us, so she finally (after about 6 months of not having dinner with us) started making her dinner while I made dinner for the rest of the family.
I'm 6 foot, 205 pounds. That's about 15-20 pounds overweight. I'm not fat. I do not enjoy exercise, as a matter of fact, I hate it. I work in computers, and I spend my days in front of a desk. Of course I've put on weight since we met 15 years ago.
Every time I'd ask for her to show me love, she'd counter with I have to exercise first. She wanted to do the Insanity exercise DVDs, so I joined her. It was horrible! That is HARD. It is definitely NOT where one should START exercising. I did it for about 4 months, but I was not happy about it. I made it clear that I hated it, and that I was only doing it for her.
After 4 months, I quit. I'd compensate by being even more affectionate. I'd tell her I love you 10 times a day or more. Hold her hand every time I could reach it.
That was about a year and a half ago that I quit Insanity, and a year ago that I quit playing the game at any scheduled time. Since then, I've exercised here and there, never really putting a lot of heart into it. I beg for her attention. We make love 2-3 times a month instead of the 4-6 times a week that we used to. When we do make love, it is only after she has rejected me multiple times and I finally get pissed that she relents. She then lies there flat and emotionless and just lets me get it over with.
I've spent the last year trying everything to bring her back to me. I treat her like a princess. I do everything for her. Every time we argue and I tell her that, though, she says "You won't do the one thing I'm asking you to do, though." Exercise. I tell her, I'm asking you to be a part of this marriage, to do the things that are required for a marriage to work. Things like showing love, saying that you love me, holding me, making love to me. You are asking for something that is totally unrelated to making a marriage work, just because you know that it is the one thing I don't want to do. You ask for this because you know I hate it and if I don't do it, then you have an excuse not to improve our marriage.
Finally, a couple of weeks ago, I gave her an ultimatum. Either you be part of this marriage again, or get out. She responded back that we should just be roommates. No longer married in any real sense, just roommates, for the kid's sake. I could not handle that. I can't spend my days with someone I love, and every day have them not return that love. When I gave the ultimatum, I wanted her to see how desperate I was. I never expected her to choose that she wanted out of our relationship. I really don't want to lose her.
So, we argued some more, and I agreed to do anything and everything she ever asked for, just to get her to stay. I couldn't bear the thought of actually losing her. I began exercising every other day, even if she wasn't exercising, so that she could see I was serious about it. I would make sure she saw me exercising, but I'd never complain about it. I wouldn't nitpick anything she did.
That started only about a week or so ago.
Then we got to this weekend. I leaned in to kiss her, and she pushed me away. I asked her to kiss me, and she hung her head, then shook her head no. I was hurt. When we went to bed Saturday night, she started saying to me "I know I told you the one thing I could never forgive is..." I screamed "NOOOO" I dove out of the bed, hit the floor screaming for her to stop talking. I knew what was coming and I didn't want to hear it. I was in so much agony, and she wouldn't stop talking. She told me that she'd slept with another man about 2-3 years ago and that she has never been able to forgive herself since.
I don't know if it's normal, but I had to know the details. Not of the act, but of who he was, how they met, where it happened. I asked so many questions, and she wouldn't answer them, not right away. I eventually got his first name, where she'd met him. They had talked a few times, but never gone out. She was at Starbucks working on some paperwork one night, when he called her and asked what she was up to. She said she was finishing up but didn't feel like going home. So he asked to come by his place. And she agreed.
They were talking and he told her "you don't understand how much I want to kiss you." And she didn't stop him. They ended up having sex, and fortunately had the time to get a condom (I wonder if he had one, or if they had to run to the store... I hope she didn't have that much time to think about what was happening and still go through with it.) When it was over, she says the panicked and kept apologizing and then left. She drove home slowly, came in and I was playing so she went to the room and fell asleep. I never knew.
I asked if there had been anyone else. She said that there had been two other guys that she'd talked to, but that when it felt like they wanted to take it physical, she ended it. One she met at Zumba, and one she saw on her friend's Facebook wall and thought he was cute so she contacted him. Those both also ended about 2 years ago. I told her that my greatest fear was that I would be able and willing to forgive her, but that she'd still want to end our relationship. But I did forgive her, because I still love her very, very much.
We talked until I felt calm enough to drive, then I went out to meet with a friend who has gone through something similar. I got home around 3:30 and had to be up at 6:15. Sunday was a rough day. I was exhausted, depressed, in pain. Here we were, and even though she was the one who cheated on me, I was the one begging her to stay. I was so confused. It doesn't make sense.
I never really got a chance to break down and cry Saturday night. So Sunday, while she was sitting on the couch next to me working, and I was watching TV, I would turn my head away from her and cry for a little bit. I'd stop for 10 minutes and then start crying again. Finally, I got up and went into our room and collapsed on the bed sobbing. After about 30 minutes, I sent her a text message saying I felt like I needed to be a priority right now. She didn't come in right away, and just when I'd given up and started to head out of the room, she came walking in.
The first thing she said when she layed down next to me was "I'm not gonna let you beat me up over this and make me feel guilty. I feel bad enough, I don't need you making me go over it again and again, just pounding me with it. I'm not gonna let you manipulate my feelings like that." I was shocked! I'm the one that is devastated to find out that my wife cheated on me and when I ask to be a priority, she comes in to tell me that I can't make her feel bad. Right then, I felt like it needed to be about my feelings, not about hers. I told her, "Yes, I want you to feel the pain that I feel. I want you to see how bad this hurt me. But that's not why I called you in here." "Then why," she spat back. "I called you in here to hold me, let me cry, help me feel better. Don't say anything. Just hold me as I grieve." She paused a moment, but she did.
And I cried for 2 hours. Sobbing occasionally, then a more subdued cry, before the sobbing began again. Finally, after I cried myself out, I turned toward her and just stared at her for awhile. I still love her. I asked her to make love to me, she half-nodded, then stood up and said she just had to go save the file she'd been working on in the living room. She left and came back in a few moments later, undressed and then laid down next to me. She didn't reach for me... just presented the board again. I undressed and crawled on top of her. She told me "I want you to know that I know you need this, but it's not helping me. It's just making me mad, but I know you need it, so I want credit for doing this for you." Maybe it's wrong of me, but she was right, I needed this, so I made love to her.
We got up and went about our day. She went back to work on the couch, and I went grocery shopping. I came home and made dinner, and she ate with us. I was exhausted, so at 7:30, I went to bed and she joined me with her laptop as she finished the paperwork. I put my arm over my eyes and began to fall asleep.
She said, I'm gonna go out to the couch and finish up, I'll be back in a little bit. I asked her to kiss me goodnight when she came in, even if I was asleep. I fell asleep, so I don't know if she kissed me when she came in, but I didn't sleep well last night. I woke up off and on throughout the night. And every time I woke up, she had her arms around me. I was laying on my side, with my back to her, and she was right up against my back with her arm around me. The next time I woke up, I was on my back and she was on hers, with her hand laying on my chest. Another time, she had pulled my leg between her legs and was holding onto my leg. Every time I woke up, though, she was holding me. We've slept for so long, recently, on opposite sides of the bed, without touching, so this was a huge deal to me.
Before I left for work, I told her how big a deal that was to me. It was something I hadn't asked her for. Just her expression of love for me. I told her that I loved her, kissed her, but she didn't reply back. That's ok, she may not be able to say it, but last night, she showed me that she loved me, more than words could have done.
I'm still hurting, I'm still confused, I still have questions. I know that when she'd go out dancing with her friends, she'd dance and flirt with other guys. She's never told me that, but my sister went with her sometimes, and once my wife got drunk, my sister would have to drag her away as some guy got to touchy, reminding my wife that she was married. I know that I will have a hard time trusting her, but I also know that I really, truly love her.
I know that my lack of attention left her feeling abandoned. But her cheating was not my fault. That was her fault. She chose to do that. She could have chosen to make an ultimatum like I did when I'd gotten as far as I could handle. I have felt just as abandoned for the last year and a half, and I've never considered cheating on her. I never sought someone else. She felt abandoned and chose to cheat. I felt abandoned and chose to fight for my marriage.
I don't know where to go from here. I can't stand the idea of letting her go. It would be easier to consider if it weren't for finding her arms around me every time I awoke last night, but right now, I just really want my wife to be in love with me again.
Dude, for her to say that she won't feel guilty about what she'd done? Really?!?! Well, she's had 2-3 years to deal with this, you JUST found out! It wouldn't have matter if it happened 2-3 years ago, you just found out and it feels like (to you) that it happened yesterday.) And then she sleeps with you, but before anything gets started she informs you that it's nothing more than a mercy f*ck for her. Screw that! She needs to own up to what she's done. I suggest that you get into counseling to help deal with your feelings because she's made it obvious that she has no intention of helping you with that.
I would also recommend that you start the 180 on her.
OK first things first. This is trickle truth. She is only going to tell you so much. You are a computer guy. Have you checked her email accounts, FB, Cell phone records? By the way get ready for blame shift. If she had a PA or an EA, it was her choice and you did nothing to force her into it. She made the choice. I would demand the full name of the guy she had the PA with and expose
Start the 180
Go to MC right away. Even if she is not willing to go
Go to the DR and get checked for STD's (your iwfe slept with someone, most PA's are unprotected)
I am sorry you are here it hurts. You need to find out as much as you can about what is currently going on. I am betting at the least she is still in contact.
She told me that she'd slept with another man about 2-3 years ago and that she has never been able to forgive herself since.
Originally Posted by confusedd
I asked if there had been anyone else. She said that there had been two other guys that she'd talked to, but that when it felt like they wanted to take it physical, she ended it. One she met at Zumba, and one she saw on her friend's Facebook wall and thought he was cute so she contacted him. Those both also ended about 2 years ago.
Originally Posted by confusedd
The first thing she said when she layed down next to me was "I'm not gonna let you beat me up over this and make me feel guilty. I feel bad enough, I don't need you making me go over it again and again, just pounding me with it. I'm not gonna let you manipulate my feelings like that."
Originally Posted by confusedd
She told me "I want you to know that I know you need this, but it's not helping me. It's just making me mad, but I know you need it, so I want credit for doing this for you."
Your wife is a horrible and selfish person. I'm truncating my description of her at those to adjectives, but believe me: she's getting off easy.
Oh, and this is likely b u l l s h i t:
Originally Posted by confusedd
They ended up having sex, and fortunately had the time to get a condom (I wonder if he had one, or if they had to run to the store... I hope she didn't have that much time to think about what was happening and still go through with it.)
Hey man I feel your pain. I know your pain! I recently discovered(8weeks ago) my wife was having an affair for the past 2 years. I read your story all the way through, and not unlike a couple of others, I too feel that something just isn't right here. When my wife first confessed, she told me that it had only been a couple of times, then it was 4 or 5 over a 5 month period, then it was a dozen times in 2 years. I am only saying this because you need to be prepared for the whole truth to come out. It is coming I assure you. There is very little doubt in my mind that she is concealing A LOT more from you. She is clearly still on the defensive. My wife took a defensive stance about her situation at first too, but the moment she confessed to all of it, that defensive stance seemed to go away. Something in her words just tells me that she is hiding more. I have to be honest with you, it isn't going to be easy for you, but in my opinion you need to keep pushing for more information. Tell her she is still hiding things from you and you know it. If she continues with her current behavior, then consider taking the 180 approach.
I'm not sure if my way of handling my situation was "correct" but I can say that I do know all about my wifes affair now. Knowledge is the key to understanding your own feelings.
I wish you luck. If you have any questions, ask away.
We did do marriage counseling at the beginning of last month. We went to two sessions. In the first session, I told the councilor everything I said above about my gaming. The councilor just scribbled on her notepad the entire time I was talking. When I was done, she turned to my wife.
As my wife talked, the councilor kept nodding and saying "aww" and "oh" and comforting her and glancing at me like "look what you've done to her." But I accepted it, because I really felt like I had caused all of what was going on in our marriage.
At the second session, we'd had a good week, so we talked to the councilor, but didn't really get anywhere.
The following week, my wife went on vacation to see her cousin all the way across the country. We could not afford for all of us to go, so she went by herself. While there, she got a call with an offer for a training that would occur one week after she returned home. She accepted the offer without talking to me about it.
While she was gone, her car's A/C went out, so it was in the shop and wouldn't be complete by the time that she returned. When I let her know, her immediate response was "Well, I have a friend in town (where the airport is, 2.5 hours from our home), maybe I can just stay with her until the car is done."
I was shocked! I told her, no, we miss you, I'll figure something out. I had her parents watch the kids and I went to get her. When she came down the ramp from the airport and saw me she just said "Hey you," and kept walking. I had to stop her and get her to hug me. She had been gone nearly two weeks and couldn't even hug me when she saw me again. While she was gone I'd text her that I missed her or loved her. She only ever said she loved me once and missed us twice the entire time she was gone.
She was home one week, and then took off again for the training. And was gone for a week for that training. We both work for a school district, so she spent her entire summer break away from us.
We haven't been back to that councilor, and I really don't want to see her again. My wife never told the councilor about the affair, and just allowed it to appear as all my fault. I did ask my wife to go to a Christian councilor but she said she doesn't want someone telling her how bad a sinner she is and laying down laws she must follow.
Wow, I'm really sorry man. I must stick to my original assesment with one change. I believe she is involved with someone now, or just got out of a lenghty affair. It sounds like she isn't feeling any remorse for what she has done because she doesn't really care about you or your marriage at this point in time. (Not to say she won't again, she may just not realize it right now). Again I may be wrong, but I'm sure I am not alone when I say you haven't really been told anything yet. All that you and the rest of us can do now is speculate, and prepare for what is to come.