What should I tell our adult daughter when she comes to visit in a few weeks? My inclination is to keep quiet as the WW’s affair is an issue to be worked out between husband and wife.
On the other hand, my daughter has mentioned several times over the years, she has always wondered why her mother didn’t take more interest in her activities when she was in High School.
Her 'A' 1994(?) through 1998
D-Day 7/4/2013 Yes, I didn't find out for almost 15 years... but the pain is just as bad as if she were with him last week.
I was about 30 when I found out about my dad's Affair. I carried that burden alone (my siblings didn't know). It was horrible. It is still horrible.
My Wxh knew about it, and he knew that I was devastated by it but had an affair anyway.
eta: I still can not stand to be in the same room with my dad, and everything that he does pisses me off. I have no idea if he knows that I know about it. It's a huge elephant in the room at all times.
[This message edited by Williesmom at 7:51 AM, August 27th (Tuesday)]
**The cruelest lies are often told in silence- Robert Louis Stevenson
My daughter is a young mom of 3 children age 4 and under. She and her husband have enough on their plate and dates of the A coincide with the birth of their second child. I do not want her thinking about anything but joy surrounding her life. She does not need her father's garbage messing with that joy.
My son is in a very strong relationship right now and moving toward marriage. He was away in college during the A and DDay. He does not need to be starting his life with our burdens. He is the only one of our kids to meet the OW at a service project. He thought she was gross, nasty, and had a high opinion of herself.
We are not trying to save face for my H. This is more about allowing them their lives without our problems interfering. Someday we may decide the time is right to tell them, but I do not see that happening.
Kids internalize everything. If knowing about an affair helps them, then tell. If telling would cause more or new hurt, do not tell them. I would speak to a therapist that specializes in family therapy after an A.
I tell people I am tired but really my heart is broken and I am sad.
We are healing as a family. She felt cheated on too esp since she met and married while he cheated. Things are much better for us now but it was definitely tough for her. Her new hubby was extremely supportive of her and us. I think they have learned from us about how fragile a marriage can be and that it has to be taken care of and nurtured.
[This message edited by whattheh at 10:10 AM, August 27th (Tuesday)]
Your daughter is enquiring about something that she obviously feels strongly about and has for quite a while. My gut feeling is she at least saw a change in her mothers behaviour during the time she is questioning about. Children are extremely perceptive creatures. They also want to be dealt with like adults, something us parents seem to forget.
I made my WS tell our children about his A. They too instinctively knew something was very wrong with me and I was tired of them thinking it was my fault, that it was me falling apart for no reason at all. Mine are 23 and 21. Amazingly enough our 21 year old is here visiting and he told me just the other day that he had suspected his father was having an affair all along. He was glad that he could now deal with his feelings in a more constructive way and know that what he was feeling was actually correct.
My main reason for telling our children was to feel safe in my own home. They had watched me struggle with being a single mom for years while my H traveled the world on a very regular basis. They saw me fall into depression and loneliness all for the sake of the job. They bared the brunt of my husbands absence, even when i tired hard to keep it from them. They certainly now deserved to know the truth and to know it was their wonderful father who had created my new living hell. This simple act made my WH accountable on a higher level for his actions. He feels the full weight of what he did now, as he should. The kids have now come to realize, through our discovery of our failings in our marriage that we have also shared with them, that even those you love can do really bad things to you. It has more importantly shown them that hard, honest work can fix even the worst of things.
It was very important for me that my children, both boys, know that this is not ok. That A's are created for reasons and that no one has a right to hurt another like I have been hurt. It was also a way for my husband to prove to me he was serious about recovering. Both of our children have been hugely supportive through our recovery and are great full that they know and that we treated them like the adults they now are.
Through thick and thin we will survive but he gets only one shot at it!
My father told me of my mothers infidelity many years ago. I wish he hadn't. Nothing positive came of it really.
I think it has been hard for my daughter (and her brothers to a slightly lesser degree) to know the truth. Prior to this we all had him on such a giant pedestal he had his own fan club at home.
I think it has made his relationship with his kids more honest. They see him as a fallible human being. They see him now trying to rebuild and restore our marriage after the mess he made. Yes it is hard - but I am glad they know. Until they knew I felt like I was living a lie with them.
I wouldn't have told them - it was his lies and deception to all of us and he needed to own it. If anyone but him had told them they wouldn't have believed it. I am glad WH was willing to genuine and honest with them.
Your WW's behavior upon and after confrontation may have a huge bearing on if you wish to tell your daughter at that point or not.
All work and no play has just cost me my wife--Gary Puckett
D-Day: 9/18/09 D-Day#2: 2/19/10 The Marriage Killer: 6/6/11
Heading for D
Lip zipped, for now, TNC.
If your DD brings up the "why wasn't mom more interested in me during my HS years" while she is home with you in a few weeks.....your response is "idk. ask her."
You need to address this with your WW first. And when you do, you make sure and tell her that your DD is upset and had noticed her mom's *absence* during those years and tell your WW that she needs to address that issue with your DD.
In my effort to be *concise*, I often come off as blunt and harsh. Sorry, don't mean to be offensive.
My inclination is to keep quiet as the WW’s affair is an issue to be worked out between husband and wife.
Inner peace begins the moment you choose not to allow another person or event to control your emotions.
I did not tell my adult children. My two step-DDs knew before I did but that is another story.
I divorced my children's father for his cheating and our kids know that. Even though I have what I believe are very valid reasons for forgiving my current H for also cheating, I do not expect my kids to understand that I would D their father, but not their step-father for what would probably seem like the same thing, to them.
If your daughter senses something is off with you when she comes you can chalk it up to the stress of her illness. If your daughter continues to press for you, then you may have to tell her. Although I really think that is your wifes job, after you confront her.
If she is doing fairly well with her recovery btw, I would strongly urge you to confront prior to her next surgery.
I believe we did the right thing with our approach, particularly when one of our children went through something similar but felt comfortable coming to us for both advice and support.
My first round with my WH's betrayal was to not say anything to my adult kids, a DS age 35 (then 30) and DD age 28 (then 23). My H, however, told our son that we weren't 'getting along' but he didn't tell him why. Even so, I kept it from my daughter and when she did find out several months after it all started she was furious with me. She felt I had kept secrets from her and treated her as a child, and she thought everyone else in our family 'knew' except for her.
This second round of what has actually been a continuation of the EA my H has been carrying on with an old HS friend, I told both of my kids. I started by telling them that there continued to be problems similar to a few years ago that had really never been resolved and I told them I was going to take actions that might cause their father to want to leave and live on his own. I also told them that if they wanted more information, I'd tell them because I didn't want to continue to keep secrets within our family. They both wanted to know, though my daughter asked more specific questions than my son. Both of them have said that it explains some of his behavior towards them over the past year, and that helps them see more clearly what was causing it.
I really have come to believe that keeping secrets like this is detrimental to the kind of relationship I want to have with my kids. I won't keep covering up for their father's lack of respect for me, our family and marriage.
It's hard. No one wants to hear that kind of information about someone they love, and especially a parent. But my son and daughter are both remarkable people and they are dealing with it well. We've talked and I've told them I am not asking them to 'choose sides' and that I expect them to love and honor their father, no matter what. But they can certainly be angry or mad or disappointed if they choose.
[This message edited by inmisery1 at 8:06 PM, August 31st (Saturday)]