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Lisa2You posted 7/6/2013 22:48 PM

Oh my...where to begin. Well, first of all the crib-notes edition; Husband's long term affair ended 18 years ago. I found out about it 13 years ago. He ended it on his own and then went on...never having another one.He believed that he didn't need to tell me because he'd become a good person and it was between him and God. Counseling for both of us - mine long term, his short term. Three young children. I've kept the secret for 13-years.

Now the longer version. 13-years ago, a mentally ill relative started spouting to me about the affair my husband had had. I went home and laughed about it to my husband, who got very serious. It was true. I cried for six months. But just two days after he told me, I had a severe health crisis. I was hospitalized and it took a year for me to recover. Do you see what happened there? I became completely dependent on the very person I hated most. Delayed healing.

My children were young and I couldn't fall apart. So, I didn't. In a lot of ways I feel robbed. I wish I'd known when it was going on. I wish I'd been given the dramatic moment of knowing it was going on. Instead, I found out after it was over...waaaaay after it was over. So, I really felt like I was unjustified to have any of those feelings a betrayed spouse has. It was over and had been for years. He'd moved on...quit drinking...started going to church... And then there was me - suddenly finding out about it.

I'm shortening this a lot, but I just don't know what to do or why I'm even here. My children are grown. My first grand baby is on the way. My husband and I have never really talked about this. But I hate what it's done to our marriage. I don't even like him. I'm a terrible example to my children. I just don't want to do it anymore. It's like life put this blanket over me for all these years, and suddenly it was removed and I can see things and feel things I never did before. I hate who I've become in my marriage.

I don't know what else to say so I'll stop talking. ~L

stillhere09 posted 7/6/2013 23:02 PM

Lisa, welcome to SI.

I'm so sorry for what you are going through.

Just because it happened long ago - that doesn't mean that it doesn't still affect you. You were not unjustified to have all the feelings a BS has when she finds out. It had happened long ago, but for you, it was all new information. It was discovering that your life and marriage was not what you had believed it to be for years.

The reason it still bothers you now is doubtless because the two of you never really discussed it. In other words, as we say, it got swept under the rug. And that hump under the rug got bigger and bigger as time went on.

If it still bothers you, tell him about it. Perhaps you can find a good marriage counselor who has a lot of experience in dealing with couples whose marriages have been through the horror of infidelity. That counselor would be able to explain to him why discussing it is necessary if he wants a happy marriage.

Hugs to you.

Lisa2You posted 7/6/2013 23:15 PM

Thank you. I've just been sitting here hoping for a response. Your stats look a lot like me. I'll be 50 in a few months - three grown kids.

I do have a counselor, and she gave me an assignment this week. It's going to be hard. But she wants me to write down everything I want to say to him and then say it. He'll be gone for 4 days, so I'm also supposed to be self-sufficient and enjoy my time alone. Anyway, we have never discussed divorce or separation...that is foremost on my mind...and I intend to tell him that.

I've used my weight to keep him away from me. And now that weight is killing me; high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes. Something's got to give! In every other area of my life I'm in control and happy. But in this area, I've lost everything. It's time for me to deal with it once and for all. The rug analogy makes so much sense to me! Thanks! ~L

wannarun posted 7/6/2013 23:29 PM

If his presence stresses you take a break!! Separate lose weight do what you want take care of you!! With your health situation I think a break and some you time would be much needed!

Skan posted 7/7/2013 13:00 PM

Hey there. Listen, it's a weekend and a holiday weekend at that, so don't be discouraged if it seems like there aren't a lot of people around. Everyone will be hitting the computer tomorrow. But rest assured that we are ALL here for you.

stillhere is right. It may have been decades ago for him and he may have found God, "healed," and gone on to live his life. However for you, when you found out, it was RIGHT THEN AND THERE! Fresh. Immediate. And then you got sick and as you so rightfully put it, had to depend on someone who had just proved himself to be undependable for you. Injury added to insult. Then it was rugswept and ignored.

Here's the thing about not resolving these issues and sweeping the shite under the rug. The pile gets deeper, higher, and stinks just as bad. You may wave a bit of Lysol around and burn candles to try to mask the smell, but it just keeps on stinking. And you never get used to the smell.

You need to do what ever it is that YOU need to do, to get healthy and to start healing. You have four days to be all by yourself. Please spend that time listening hard to that voice inside of you, that can clearly tell you what you need and want. If you need to separate for a time, go to counseling, and hire a life coach to help you with your nutrition and health, do it. If you need to stay there and drag his butt through counseling in your church or do couples counseling, do it. I'm really glad that you are seeing a therapist for help. I certainly found my IC to be a great help to me.

This is a time for you to take for you. Be kind to yourself. Be honest with yourself. Treat yourself well. He's had decades, DECADES to "get over it." Take what you need and put yourself first. And please come back often for support and to vent.

somanyyears posted 7/7/2013 13:20 PM


..i got the truth 40 years after..

..rocked my entire life to the core.. total re-allignment of false reality..

..there is a thread in the 'I Can Relate' forum... pg.2 'For those who found out years later.'

..well worth a read for useful tips and experiences..

..we rug-swept for 23 of the 40 years.. it's a long, sad story..

..wishing you success and a 'real' life ahead of you!


ItsaClimb posted 7/7/2013 14:13 PM

I'm pretty much in the same boat as you.

So, I really felt like I was unjustified to have any of those feelings a betrayed spouse has. It was over and had been for years. He'd moved on...quit drinking...started going to church... And then there was me - suddenly finding out about it.

^^ Don't think like this. You have every reason to have the same feelings as any other betrayed spouse. You ARE a betrayed spouse AND you were lied to for a number of years and to top it all it sounds like everything was then rug-swept for a long time. You are perfectly entitled to whatever emotions you are having right now. Work through those emotions do the work your counsellor sets you, give yourself time to figure it all out... it takes a LONG time - they say 2-5 years is the norm. I've learnt over the last 10 months that there are no "quick fixes", no short-cuts, you can't rush this, take it one step at a time, the thing is to keep moving though, I am sure we will find the answers we need in time. {hugs}

Ashland13 posted 7/7/2013 14:44 PM

Hi Lisa,

I'm sorry for your hard time and your health problems.

My story is a little different, but the end result of pain and betrayal I think is often the same, even with differing details of our stories.

I don't have much advice to give but wanted to extend empathy from another person going through major health conditions alone.

I wonder what it would be like for you to try something like a mini-vacation by yourself...even to a relative's you trust and don't mind being around, if there are money issues?

It could get you out from underfoot of your WH and some time to concentrate on your own needs. It could also get you away from the triggers he causes...FWIW (for what it's worth) my STBX phone is a giant trigger and I had to ask him last week to leave it in his car or turn it off-it can't come out in my presence or I have panic attacks, because that's how he turned EA to PA, right in front of us.

I wish you peace and a chance to put your feet up somewhere that has no phones, no electronics, except maybe you're favorite movie.

Lisa2You posted 7/7/2013 15:34 PM

Thank you all so much. This is going to sound stupid, but it just occurred to me this morning that there are three monumental things happening in my life right now and perhaps that's why I'm no longer happy walking around that huge, stinky mass under the rug. Our first grand baby is due soon (husband not at all supportive of our beautiful, loving daughter in this), our youngest just graduated from HS and... wait for it... our 30th anniversary is this week!

If it's not time for a crisis, then I don't know when it is!

And you might have noticed...yes, he decided to go on a fishing trip for our anniversary! I was invited...but how could I ...even if I wanted to (which I don't) daughter needs me! Geesh! Can you see how screwed up we are?

Anyway, thanks so much everyone. Your words of encouragement are lifting me from the mire. ~L

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