Survivors of multiple affairs here? Advice or 2x4 welcome - Talk About Marriage
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post #1 of 28 (permalink) Old 12-28-2015, 06:14 AM Thread Starter
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Survivors of multiple affairs here? Advice or 2x4 welcome

I am the WS. The past 3.5 months have been hard all around. I was busted for still having communication with my AP of 2+ years. Quick history - started dating husband 1998 married 2002. 3 children born 04, 06, 08. #1 very short lasting PA x1 in 2007 that I buried deep and never addressed or admitted to until recently. I can only guess resulted from post baby depression but also know that I felt disconnected from spouse #2 EA started 04/13 turned PA 10/13. Lives out of state so mostly online/electronic contact. Have seen on several trips home but not all trips included intimate contact (4 total over this period) My husband gave me multiple chances to cut it off and restart at home and I blew it each time. Why? Hard to say - IC says I have boundary/compulsion/depression issues. Deep down I think I knew of these but was a selfish prig. When my attention/love tank was low I would reach out to the OM. When it got filled my attention returned back home (sounds so sick now). My husband told me another instance would result in divorce but when I needed the attention I rationalized to myself every time that "this time is the last" Finally - I have been able to do it. My "last time" has truly been the last time and I FEEL FREE! 3.5 months so far when the MOST I made it before was maybe a week. I have been getting the help Ive needed all along but would not admit to finally to help me stay in this place.

And now Ive blown it. Too many lies and attempts to cover my tracks, too much hurt to his dear heart have taken their toll. He wants "separation" but is honest that it will result in divorce. I still have hope but he has none. Says he does not love me "like that" anymore. We still are in the same house, we still are together intimately (no kissing of course) sleep in same bed etc. He wants me out but I have been dragging my feet because he only wants me to have kids every other weekend which isnt acceptable to me (I would agree on a 50/50 split) We still do things together.

I know I have majorly screwed up. I KNOW that nothing he did validates my actions. I KNOW I was a selfish *****. I do not know what made me turn the corner, was most likelly threat of divorce and the fact I really was ready to let the OM go (I had contacted my IC then our MC two weeks prior to the final straw telling him I wanted to come clean). I know I have drug my dear husband through the mud and have most likely, very likely almost for sure doomed our marriage to the dust.... BUT I keep trying everyday more than I ever have. I want to honor him and love him like he has always deserved but I was too stuck in my pit to do consistently. I have given up on him too many times. I have given up on myself and my family too many times. I will not do it again.

I still hold out hope.

Someone tell me I am wasting my time that I am a useless dreamer, that I too should take off my wedding rings because the he will never love me again and I need to face reality... (face reality... that is what he tell me)

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post #2 of 28 (permalink) Old 12-28-2015, 06:34 AM
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Re: Survivors of multiple affairs here? Advice or 2x4 welcome

In the course of your married relationship, have the two of you gone through any marriage counseling(MC) together, or have either of you brought your particular problem before your Church pastoral staff or psychologist, provided that you are Church members?

Additionally, who were the other men(OM) that you hooked up with? Relationships from the past or people you just met either randomly or perhaps online?

At any time, did you ever deceptively lie, or "trickle-truth" to your H, or did you just outrightly deny having any knowledge about any of your affairs?

At what point did you feel any true or genuine remorse for your actions?

Did you have unprotected sex with the OM and your husband simultaneously and if so, did you ever give thoughts to the possible acquisition and the spreading of the same to your spouse?

I really need to know the answers to these in order to more honestly assess your situation! Thanks!

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Last edited by arbitrator; 12-28-2015 at 06:53 AM.
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post #3 of 28 (permalink) Old 12-28-2015, 06:42 AM
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Survivors of multiple affairs here? Advice or 2x4 welcome

I'm not going to tell you that you are wasting your time. I don't know that that's true. Here is what I do know: Affairs are like stabbing our SO's in the back repeatedly. They're not going to "just get over" that, if they recover at all. Your husband had been more than generous, maybe to a fault.

You're going to have to first accept that things might not work out between the two of you. That doesn't mean you shouldn't work towards reconciliation but the results are not guaranteed. You can't control your husband and he has earned the right to feel as he does.

If you want to stand any chance of fixing your marriage your life is going to change drastically. You're going to drive that change. While nothing can justify your actions, there are reasons why you cheated. It sounds like you are working to uncover those. That's good.

It sounds like you are attending marriage counseling, right?

Have you had "full disclosure" yet? Laid a complete timeline of your affair out from day one?

Have you and your Husband been tested for STD's?


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Last edited by thebirdman; 12-28-2015 at 06:49 AM.
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post #4 of 28 (permalink) Old 12-28-2015, 06:55 AM
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Re: Survivors of multiple affairs here? Advice or 2x4 welcome

Quote:
Originally Posted by mgleckler74 View Post
When my attention/love tank was low I would reach out to the OM. When it got filled my attention returned back home (sounds so sick now). My husband told me another instance would result in divorce but when I needed the attention I rationalized to myself every time that "this time is the last"
Do you even know what actually fills your "love tank" apart from the excitement of new person and snaps of new attention in the forbidden/romantic?

What's there to fix things when you feel bored with your improved life? What keeps you attentive on this relationship? What "does it" for you in the relationship?
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post #5 of 28 (permalink) Old 12-28-2015, 08:18 AM
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Re: Survivors of multiple affairs here? Advice or 2x4 welcome

Do you honestly believe you're capable of being faithful? Right now you're scared because of the impending D, but looking at your history it's unlikely if your husband took you back after cheating on him multiple times that you would remain faithful to him going forward.

At this point I guess completely be over the top affectionate, loving, and understanding when he falls into depression, and has panic attacks due to the affairs and stuff. And get ready to deal with years of trust issues if you really want to R. It will be a really long hard road. You may need to just let the D go through and see what type of relationship you can build with him, it will likely turn platonic, but you can hope and try in the interim.
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post #6 of 28 (permalink) Old 12-28-2015, 08:30 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Survivors of multiple affairs here? Advice or 2x4 welcome

I am very new here and not sure I am responding correctly... guess we will find out lol

Here goes. Nothing to hide. If I do not fully answer a question in a way that gives enough info for you to help please let me know.
1. We did MC together on and off for about 2 years. Pastoral staff at church are aware and have connected us to our (my) currect IC after our previous moved out of state. We saw him together for a little over a year and I now see him on my own as IC. I was not completely honest in my efforts so I hid alot of information both because of shame and selfishness when I wasnt ready to give up the affair. All cards are now on the table and we are working through them (IC and I)

2. Both OM were people I knew. #1 was MD at a hospital I worked. Knew him for about a year before. #2 I knew from HS. We didnt date in HS but slowly reconnected over several trips back home I made my myself because spouse didnt want to go.

3. This is where my trouble gets deep. I always denied the first. It was only once and I really had myself convinced hiding it was safer. Fast forward 6 years. There I go again. This one was much more subtle and I got caught up before I knew what hit me. He discovered late 2013. Forgave me. Did everything he should have. We didnt start counseling right away though and I fell right back in... slowly with the "how are you" messages that progressed again. Soooo alot of TT. And I hate to admit but I got to where most of us that do this do... I got "technical" There were SEVERAL times OM and I tried to stop what was going on ourselves. Several breaks that we ended up picking back up. During a attempt at break though if spouse asked me if there was anything I was able to say "no" in that moment but was still lying because I should have fessed up I was having trouble keeping it done. Boils down to I lied and TTed. Second discovery 10/14. He said anymore contact and we divorce. Needless to say... here I am again.

4. Genuine/true remorse. I thought I had it after the first DDay late 2013. I believe I did but I didnt get counseling right away. I entered a depression from the multiple hits of the discovery, losing the emotional support of the OM and dealing with grieving spouse. I didnt have the knowledge to deal with it all (I know... poor babyyyyy) and to ease the pain I reached out again. So where there was remorse, obviously not ENOUGH. So forward to NOW. It is almost undefineable, the difference in the remorse I feel. I thought it was genuine before but whoa baby... this is different. This is willingly on my knees before God EVERY MORNING asking for strength and forgiveness. This is getting out of the bed every day being here for my family instead of hiding in it until noon. This is being prideful in my husband and overjoyed for the feelings that have returned for him, this is finally "letting go" of the perceived wrong doings done to me by him (that at the time were used as justification) This is me KNOWING this is not his fault. This is me not hiding anything anymore no matter the pain it causes me. This is me not getting angry at him for his feelings, letting him have them and then reflecting on my role. I remind myself of what I did instead of hiding it from myself. I look for help anywhere I can... here, other forums, books, IC, meds, church. I had to be knocked off my high horse and pulled along behind him until I was so bloody I couldnt recongnize myself. Now I have cut the cord from the affair FINALLy I can start to heal. To answer, yes... this time the remorse is real. I can feel the difference. He says he sees the difference too... just that it might be too late.

5. The last question is painful, but I said honest. Was unprotected. But I did get checked and am clean.

Thank you Arbitrator
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post #7 of 28 (permalink) Old 12-28-2015, 08:37 AM
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Re: Survivors of multiple affairs here? Advice or 2x4 welcome

I'm going with selfish prig.

You are not in a position to be faithful, let your spouse go. He deserve better.

In youth it was a way I had, to do my best to please, And change, with every passing lad to suit his theories.
But now I know the things I know, and do the things I do; And if you do not like me so, To hell, my love, with you! --Dorothy Parker
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post #8 of 28 (permalink) Old 12-28-2015, 08:44 AM
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Re: Survivors of multiple affairs here? Advice or 2x4 welcome

Also, and this one may hurt too, are the children his? I know based on the dates you gave they are, but if there's any possibility he's fathering someone else's child he deserves to know that and seek paternity tests on them.
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post #9 of 28 (permalink) Old 12-28-2015, 08:57 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Survivors of multiple affairs here? Advice or 2x4 welcome

Fair question. It is hard to get hurt by someone I dont know over the internet. I know there will be *******s who make unhelpful comments. They know who they are. I will only pay attention to those out there that are here to truly help. There are his. The first was only about a month worth of flirting with one physical and then ended. That happened about 6 months after the 06 baby. Dates of kids are 01/04 09/06 and 08/08.
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post #10 of 28 (permalink) Old 12-28-2015, 11:37 AM
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OP, this will take some time, if R will happen at all. It took me 2 yrs of continuous divorce court dates, verifying her conversations that the A was truly over, and verifying that the change in her was genuine, and lasting. And that was for the 1 affair I knew about.

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post #11 of 28 (permalink) Old 12-28-2015, 12:17 PM
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Re: Survivors of multiple affairs here? Advice or 2x4 welcome

Was the third child born in '08 fathered by your first affair partner?
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post #12 of 28 (permalink) Old 12-28-2015, 01:37 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Survivors of multiple affairs here? Advice or 2x4 welcome

No. That ended around Marchish of 07 We moved here July of 07 and she came 0808

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post #13 of 28 (permalink) Old 12-28-2015, 02:29 PM
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Re: Survivors of multiple affairs here? Advice or 2x4 welcome

I would say let your husband go. You have done too much damage and too much injury to his self esteem and sense of masculinity. Even if the two of you were to somehow save the marriage, it would probably be only half a marriage at most, because there would be no trust and your BH would probably never open himself up to be truly intimate with you again. There are some things you can do for him to at least partly atone for what you did and get him to a point where he at least does not outright hate your guts for the rest of his life:

1) Write him a heartfelt letter, a long one, laying out the timeline of your affairs from the very beginning. Tell him everything you want him to know, don't hold anything back. Take FULL responsibility for your cheating and bad behavior, do not blame anything on him.

2) Be fair to him in the divorce. Ask for only the minimum of what you fairly and legally deserve as mother of his kids...but nothing more. Do not let your lawyer attack your husband or drag him through the dirt.

3) Disclose everything to your family and friends. Tell them the truth. Tell them your husband is divorcing you because you are a serial cheater, that he is a good man and did nothing to deserve it. Publicly take responsibility for the destruction of the marriage. Do not let your family berate him or blame him in any way. Stand up for him if they do.

4) Continue going to IC. Get to the root of your issues and find out why you have sh!t for boundaries and why you are lacking in self control and moral fiber. Let your BH see you working on yourself.

5) Be the best mom you can be to your kids. Make your husband know that the kids will be safe with you when the two of you split.

6) Refrain from being promiscuous during and after the divorce. Don't be a trailer park, cliche mom. Don't parade a succession of fvck-buddies through your home in front of your kids. Try to go a while without a man in your life if it is possible for you to do so. Show your husband the respect post-divorce that you should have been showing him in your marriage. Don't start dating before the ink is dry on the divorce petition. Have the decency to wait until after the divorce is final and legal to start your man-hunting.

7) Work diligently and gracefully with your BH to be good, cooperative co-parents. Show your children you respect your BH. Never talk bad about their father to them.

8) Try your best not to argue or fight with your BH during the divorce process, even if you are angry with him or even if your complaint is legitimate, because ultimately you are the one who brought about the split. Talk with him rationally and keep your cool.

9) Once he files for divorce and one of you moves out...you are on your own. Don't be calling him in the middle of the night to come pick you up because your car broke down, or to come over and fix your leaky faucet. His days as your private handyman/man-b!tch are over. He owes you none of these things. You squandered those privileges when you fired him as your husband and started sleeping with your OM.

10) Be honest and stop lying to him. When he asks a question, tell the truth.

If you can do these things, your BH may eventually come to trust you enough to want to be friends with you again one day in the far off future, but don't expect him to be a fan of yours right now. Don't build your hopes up thinking that if you do these things he will take you back. You are doing these things to be a better parent and a better person overall, and to atone somewhat for what you did. You were a lousy wife, but you could be the best ex-wife in the world if you work at it.
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post #14 of 28 (permalink) Old 12-28-2015, 02:30 PM
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Re: Survivors of multiple affairs here? Advice or 2x4 welcome

MG:

I hear a lot of talk about what you want.

Honest question: What do you think would be best for your husband? Why?

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post #15 of 28 (permalink) Old 12-28-2015, 03:31 PM
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Re: Survivors of multiple affairs here? Advice or 2x4 welcome

How old are you and your husband by the way? Are you in the U.S.?

Do you work in healthcare?
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