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determined99 posted 6/10/2013 09:50 AM

I am on vacation with my husband and daughter and I have just learned that he has been having an affair with a 67 year old co-worker (he is 38 and I am 36)for several months. I received an anonymous email telling me about the affair and when I confronted him he EVENTUALLY came clean. My husband is a lay minister/church leader and to say I am shocked is an understatement. He tells me he loves me and that he will fight for me and our marriage, but I need some advice:
1) My WS doesn't want me to tell my parents because, "they will never forget it." However, I am all alone and for the past 4 days have been in hell. To be honest, I just want my Mama... Should I tell them anyway? His parents?
2) I want a face to face meeting with the other woman. I don't want to attack her, but I want to find out if his story lines up with hers and I also want her to see me and know what she has done to me and my daughter. Thoughts on how to do it?
3) How should I tell the OW's husband. He has no idea and my WS says this would kill him because he is in poor health. However, I know he needs to know. I have no idea who he is or how I can reach him

Thanks for your advice. I am 4 states from home and all alone.

Saddayforus posted 6/10/2013 10:25 AM

I'm new to this horrible crap myself so don't have any sage advice, but wanted to give you (((((HUGS)))))

The whole thing is very upsetting. And while on vacation, wow, I'm so very sorry. You will find lots of good support and advice from members here!

1Faith posted 6/10/2013 10:58 AM

Oh Determined

I am so sorry you are here but you are in a safe and caring place. No one has all the answers but you will get a lot of advice and care here.

First, breathe. Deep breaths.

This is an unfathomable situation you are trying to reconcile. Your body and mind cannot make sense of it. YOU ARE IN SHOCK

Know that your feelings, emotions and thougths will vacilate and this is normal.

You will love and hate in the same 2 minutes. You will have hope and despair. You will want to try and want to give up. Give yourself TIME to process.

Please read the Healing Library on how best to start to process this mess. There is a lot of great information there and it can help give you a thought process and guideline to help navigate through.

1) Right now you need support around you. If that is your mom/parent's then that is who it is. This is NOT your secret to hide. Your husband should support you in your healing first and foremost and not worry about his imagine. You need to feel safe and start to heal.

2) Double think about a face to face meeting. It will be very hard to stay objective. This is an emotional volitle situation. I would suggest sending an email.

3)The OW's husband deserves to know the truth. Having him know will bring the spot light to the affair on both sides. Do you know him? If you do, I would reach out personally. If you do not, I would send an email. Keep it simple.

"I am sorry to inform you that I recently discovered that your wife and my husband have been having an affair. I am not informing you to hurt you but believe you need to know. If you'd like to reach out to discuss further I am willing to speak with you. I am sorry this has happened to you and your family and mine."

Your husband is using excuses on why NOT to do what you need to do.

It is time for him to man up and take ownership for his actions. It is time for repenting, acknowledging and atonement to all injured parties. He can't sweep this under the rug and hope it goes away. He needs to do a deep dive to understand WHY he chose to cheat in the first place. Those are HIS issues to own and work on.

Knowledge is power. So keeping asking questions. Define YOUR boundaries and don't let him guide your respone to his horrible decision.

How long did the A last?

Good luck. Keep moving.

[This message edited by 1Faith at 11:00 AM, June 10th (Monday)]

Jospehine85 posted 6/10/2013 11:08 AM

1. Tell your family. Your WH is asking you to suffer further in order to protect his dirty little secret and to perpetuate a lie as to what kind of man he is. He has no right to ask you this. That is not a good sign. It means right now he is only thinking of himself and not of you.

2. OW knows about you and your children. She doesn't care about you at all. She has absolutely no incentive to talk to you, be nice to you or tell you the truth. Don't confront her. All you would be doing is giving her an opportunity to attack you. You will never know if what she says is true. She may lie just to contradict your WH and make you miserable.

3. A condition of your R should be that your WH give you the identity of the OW and her BH, then you call him and talk to him. I call bullshit on poor health. WSs ALWAYS give a ridiculous reason why it's not a good idea to contact the other BS. The reality is your WS is ashamed and fighting to keep their dirty little behavior secret. This is your WS protecting himself, not the OBS. Totally selfish.

By the way that anonymous email is probably from the OW. She wants you to leave your WH. Another reason not to talk to her. She wants to see you mad at your WH. Don't give her what she wants.

(((determined99))) you are in for a rollercoaster of emotions. Please please please start reading in the Healing Library. There is also a thread in Reconciliation about what people would have done differently. Read it.

My recommendation to you: Tell your family, demand the identity of OW and her BH, complete transparency, timeline, complete NC IMMEDIATELY, LIKE NOW, or kick him out of the house and file for separation. I have yet to see and reconciliation work when the BS has been passive.

In fact, GO HOME NOW. Do not continue the vacation with your WH. He needs to understand the severity of what he has done. The bigger the shock and awe, the more likely he is to "get it", become remorseful and go in to true R. The fact that when confronted he had to EVENTUALLY come clean is not a good sign. Like above, it is a sign that he is in self-protection mode. While he is in self-protection mode he's not fit to be in R with you.

Actions not words. He says he loves you and will fight for you, but right now his actions say it's all about him.

Also, you need to go home now and get tested for all STDs. Do NOT under any circumstances have sex with your WH without a condom. Don't believe him if he says they used protection. All WS lie about that.

Reality check, if the MOW (married other woman) would cheat on her husband AND sleep with your WH knowing he is married with children, she has some serious issues and it is more likely than not she is sleeping with other men also.

cliffside posted 6/10/2013 11:16 AM

I'm only four months out so hopefully some wiser members will respond with advice too.

I remember those first few days so vividly, I'm so sorry for what you're going through. I don't think anyone can put into words how they feel when they find out. I was a complete and utter mess.

How old is your daughter? Can you end the vacation and just go home?

In my opinion - you want to tell your mother? You go tell your Mother! Your husband gave up his right to have say in what you do when he cheated on you, and put the health and future of his family at risk. Tell him you're telling your Mother, you just need to figure out if you should do it before or after you get tested for STDs. That should shut him up.
And definitely tell the other woman's (OW) betrayed spouse (BS). He deserves to know.

As for meeting with her. Gently, I wouldn't bother. She doesn't care about you. She will not feel sorry for you. She'll most likely find some way to turn herself into the victim. Trust me. I've seen it first hand.

You need to focus on you and your daughter. Try to eat and drink lots of water. If eating is hard try drinking ensure and/or smoothies.

Lastly, we're reconciling but for us to get to where we are now I made my WH go into therapy and find out why he did this. He had to go total No Contact (NC) and he had to answer every question I had honestly. I know he has been honest because the details he shared aren't pretty. He has also been totally remorseful.
You might want to think about what you will require from your WH to reconcile, if that's what you want. But no matter what - do what is best for you and you're daughter!

Sending lots and lots of hugs. Unfortunately, all of us here totally understand what you're going through.

1Faith posted 6/10/2013 13:55 PM


Many marriages survive to become much, much stronger than they were before the affair.

It's not easy, it's not going to happen overnight, and you will second-guess yourself constantly. Get ready for the rollercoaster ride.

Here are the first, necessary steps:

The Three R's -the the 'trifecta' of rebuilding. Without the Three R's, it aint gonna happen. They are:

Remorse: do they have it? Are they truly sorry for what they've done? Guilty? Ashamed?

Responsibility: do they fully accept the blame for their choice to have an affair? Or are they pushing it off on you, claiming you 'drove' them to it? Do they fully realize just what their actions have done to you and to your marriage? Are they willing to do their part to heal that?

Respect: are they showing it to you and to your marriage? They show you respect by cutting off all contact with the Other Woman and letting you know immediately if they receive contact from same. They show respect for you by answering all your questions honestly, giving you an open pass into the formerly 'secret' areas of their life to reassure you. They show you respect by allowing you your grief, anger, obsession and pain and not trying to 'talk' you out of it or belittle you for not 'getting over it'. They show you respect by agreeing to go to counseling alone or together, if you so desire it.

The Goodbye -Absolutely necessary and no negotiation on this point. The affair must end, completely and without any lingering 'friendship' between the two.

Quoting Dr. Willard F. Harley, Jr., Ph.D. from the MarriageBuilders website on 'saying goodbye.'

"How should an unfaithful spouse tell their lover that their relationship is over?

If left to their own devices, many would take a Caribbean cruise to say their final good-byes. Obviously, that will not do. In fact, I recommend that the final good-bye be in the form of a letter, and not in person or even by telephone. My advice is to write a final letter in a way that the victimized spouse would agree to send it. It should begin with a statement of how selfish it was to cause those they loved so much pain, and while marital reconciliation cannot completely repay the offense, it's the right thing to do. A statement should be made about how much the unfaithful spouse cares about their spouse and family, and for their protection, has decided to completely end the relationship with the lover. He or she has promised never to see or communicate with the lover again for life, and asks the lover to respect that promise. Nothing should be said about how much the lover will be missed. After the letter is written, the victimized spouse should read and approve it before it is sent."

Start the NC now. Hope this helps you convey to your husband HIS role in making the first steps of helping you heal.

Good luck.

determined99 posted 6/10/2013 13:59 PM

Thanks for everyone's help. I finally feel like I have a little support. My daughter is 9. He is telling me the affair lasted since about October and that they only had sex twice. But, I really don't feel like he is being honest with me about this. I can just tell. We are going home tomorrow but it will be a 14 hour car ride with our daughter in the back seat. As sick and twisted as this sounds, our marriage has been the best ever since I found out. He holds me, kisses me, tells me he loves me and really acts like he wants to be around me. Is it real? I don't know. I am so scared that we will get home and he will say it is over. I emailed the OW by forwarding the anonymous email and said, "I am broken and alone. Please reassure me that this isn't true." She responded back that she would talk to me, but that she didn't want me to email her at work any more. Like she deserves any courtesy from me at all.

Jospehine85 posted 6/11/2013 13:51 PM

Determined99 have you talked to your family yet? You should. You should also speak with a church leader who is above your WH.

Be leery of your WH's new found affection right now. All of his other behaviors have screamed "damage control" mode. His doting on you may be instigated by his desire to talk you into keeping his nasty secret and not by any positive feelings for you.

Reconsider speaking with the OW. You have just given her and your husband notice to work together on their story they are going to tell you. You can not believe anything she tells you.

Get a hold of your WH's phone NOW and look for contact between them. YOU keep his phone. When you get home check the computer before he can. He better give you the passwords to all of his email, skype and/or google+ accounts. Facebook too.

Ghostrider posted 6/11/2013 16:02 PM

I agree with the advice you've been given. Feel free to tell your parents or best friend. Just be judicious. Ignore your WH's opinion in this matter. He unilaterally decides on having an A and now wants to set conditions? It's his bed, let him lay in it.

I'd ignore the OW. She's a waste of time.

Tell the BH. Again WS always lie about 3 things:

1. The other BS
2. The number of times and/or partners
3. Using protection

As for your WH acting so nice, my WW was incredibly nice to me in the depths of her A's. One time she even called me to wish me goodnight when she was traveling. Of course, 2hrs later, she was with her OM. The lovey dovey stuff is often used as a smoke screen.

Be careful when you tell the other BH. That may send your WH into attack mode as he vents that his wonderful lie has been exposed.

Take care. Focus on you and your daughter. This is a painful and long journey. But you can survive. We have.

Dare2Trust posted 6/12/2013 23:56 PM


Personally, I'd tell my parents; and welcome their support.

The OW's husband deserves to know - and I doubt if being told the truth about his marrriage will kill him.

As for meeting with the OW: I wouldn't bother. What makes you think a woman who LIES, CHEATS and commits adultery with a church-man like your husband would be honest with you? OW deserves none of your time, in my opinion.

Does your husband plan to confess his adulterous behaviors to the Elders of his church; and beg their forgiveness?

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