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cytron posted 9/4/2013 09:39 AM

A co-worker of mine told me about this site and forum. I have been saddened by everything I read here and it brings to light my own situation or as I call it, my own personal hell.

I am 41 years old, married for 15 years and have two beautiful children ages 9 and 5. My wife and I have been together for 20 years and I have been the only guy she was ever with. I had girlfriends previous to her. What I found out a few weeks before our 15 year anniversary truly horrified me and I am not sure where to turn.

My wife started working with a male teacher at her school in the fall of 2011. He is 13 years younger than her. They established a friendship and I became part of that friendship. We did things together with him and his wife, he played with my kids, I went bike riding and running with him, went out to dinner and drinking together, etc. etc. Normal friendly relationship as I have always been open and non-jealous. We always had a good relationship like that.

In the spring of 2012, her principal told her that he would be splitting her and him up on separate teams. That sent her into a deep depression that lasted all summer. She was devastated that he was taken away from her and that they would be no longer working together. I supported her saying that they did it for a reason, they want two strong teachers on separate teams, etc. etc. Being the supportive husband, we continued to get together with him and his wife and continue our friendship.

This depression led to a few arguments as our relationship has always been on rocky ground and I had made the mistake of yelling at her to go to "him" if she wanted someone better, etc. etc. She assured me that nothing was going on and that they were friends. I had every reason to believe her as if we had one thing going for us, it was trust.

Well, that was the biggest mistake I ever made in my life. In March, 2013, we went out to dinner with the couple and my wife and him couldn't keep their eyes off of each other all night. I doubt his wife noticed it, but I did. Sure, he is a great looking guy and everything I am not, but I was just floored by this "flirting." But again, being the trusting husband I didn't think too much about it.

In May, 2013, my wife gave me her cell phone to upload pictures of our kids into the computer and I received the shock of my life. A text from him came through and I read it. It was flirty and that caused me to go into a tailspin. I threw the phone down (did not break) and gave it back to her not wanting to read anything else. A week later, I noticed that she started hiding her phone, always having it face down, always protecting it, etc. One morning, I got a chance to see the phone. The horror ensued. I saw over 200 messages between the two of them. She was telling him how hot she was for him, that her marriage is broken, that we never have sex, how she has needs and I don't satisfy them, etc. etc. He is playing into it all during the text messages. A week later, her "friend" and his wife had their child. I chalked up the flirting to he was probably not "getting it" from his wife who was always sick during her pregnancy. I didn't want to believe what was happening.

On June 12, 2013 (the day of the 20th anniversary of our first date), I found more text messages...hundreds of them. More flirting, etc. He had been over the previous day dropping off an air hockey table while I was with our kids swimming. She told me he would be at the house for 10 minutes and then leave. I watched him pull into our garage and go into our house and leave over 90 minutes later. All the texts were about what they were doing to each other, how they should have done more, how they wanted each other, etc. etc. I couldn't believe it.

The flirting, etc. continued for several weeks until the day of July 29, 2013. We had gone to the Poconos for a weekend for our 15th anniversary. We had a great weekend and really connected together as a couple all the while me knowing what was going on. On the 29th, my wife went out to run some "errands". She sends me a text asking if it would be ok if she went out with him for a drink. BTW...his wife was away with their newborn baby. I said sure no problem. I was baiting them. During that day, I saw over 100 texts about what she wanted him to do to her, how it is only physical, etc. etc. She texted me about 2 hours into her "visit" and said, I hope you don't mind, but we stayed in for a drink. Wow!!!

The next day, I got her cell phone and saw more messages about how happy she was and that even our kids asked her why she was so happy. Her quote to him was..."can't exactly have a mind blowing experience and not think about it and be happy the next day." I was devastated.

I have found out that she is cheating on me with a "mutual friend" who just had a baby girl with his wife, is 15 years younger and is everything that I am not. My own personal hell is now here and not sure what to do about it.

I have seen a lawyer, a paralegal, drawn up post-nup agreement, divorce and custody papers. I plan on confronting her next weekend while we have a babysitter as I don't want the kids to be in the house when I do this.

The fact is I could ruin her entire life. I could expose him to his wife, they teach together and work in the same building and I could tell of their friends what they have been doing. I could tell her principal and the school board. I could effectively destroy her career and destroy all of her friendships.

I have no idea how to approach this and would love any advice that anybody could give me.

atsenaotie posted 9/4/2013 10:41 AM

Hi cytron,

Sorry for your situation, but glad that you found SI. There is a lot of good advice here.

Your WWs A is not about you, it is about her. There is something inside of her that wanted the external validation and affirmation from the OM. Rather than have healthy boundaries when dealing with an OM, she had poor boundaries and allowed herself to enjoy the rush of a new relationship and the sexual tension and connection. Many people, many of us, participate in dysfunctional M, but do not choose to have an A.

You seem to be making good first steps with seeing an attorney and having papers drawn up. Read in the healing library and other posts here on SI about NC (no contact) letters and establishing boundaries if your WW wants to try to return to the M and you are willing to give her the chance.

You should plan on telling the OM's BS (other man's betrayed spouse). She very definitely has a right to know, and it is the best way of keeping your WW and him apart. Do not let your WW know you will be telling the OM's BS, just tell her.

I could effectively destroy her career and destroy all of her friendships.

I understand the feeling, and I know you are saying you could, not that you would. If you decide you want to D your WW, then ruining her work will likely cost you more in support after the D. If there is any chance you may want to R in the future, scorched earth will make that difficult.

For the time being, you do not need to choose either D or R (reconciliation). You have a third option which is "Not Divorcing" while you decide what you want. This also provides time, if you are interested in R, to watch your WW for actions that prove she is remorseful and is taking steps to identify and fix her issues.

When you confront your WW, be prepared for her to lie, obfuscate, and blame-shift. These are all pretty common responses from a WS. You do not need to prove anything to her. You both know the truth of what has been going on. There is another post in Just Found Out where the poster describes a pretty good confrontation.

Keep posting and reading on SI, there is a lot of good advice here. If some specific advice does not seem to fit you, feel free to leave it, but the conventional wisdom here on SI is usually pretty on target. There are lots of books than can provide guidance. Not Just Friends by Glass and Sexual Detours by Hines are tow that I and others have profited from reading.

Good luck to you.

Painfuljourney posted 9/4/2013 11:23 AM

I hope you printed off the texts. The other BS needs to know. Please tell her what a slime bag her WH is.

Sorry you are going through this. It sounds like you are approaching this the right way. Good luck.

cytron posted 9/4/2013 13:06 PM

Thank you for your support. I did send every single text message to my email address and then saved them in a Word Document.

She has always been a loving and faithful wife who would be the last person I would ever think of having an affair. She has always had low self esteem about herself and I am sure she felt "wanted" by someone else who paid attention to her besides me. The thing that troubles me almost more than anything is how she confided in him saying that her marriage is broken and probably telling her about my ED issues that I have been having for the past year or so. That is very embarrassing and she always said she supported me through it. Funnier thing is that physically, we had been closer than ever and mixing it up in order to bring that spark back in our relationship. I guess I wasn't man enough for her.

I have read a lot of advice on here, but it seems like most people reconcile. This is so hard to believe as I read the stories and I cry for the people that this is happening to. I can't even stand to look at my wife knowing what she did...especially with someone who has a newborn child. She has single handedly destroyed my family and another person's family.

I am going to confront her next Saturday when we have a babysitter. This needs to come out and I need to be strong and courageous. I am having a tough time thinking that I can do this. I don't know how she is going to react, but I am sure she will try to cover up and when I ask her to tell me the truth about what happened that Monday night, I have a feeling that all hell will break loose. I want to be amicable about this and I want to do what is best, but the fact is she destroyed the only thing I ever wanted and that was a strong marriage.

atsenaotie posted 9/4/2013 13:27 PM

I guess I wasn't man enough for her.

The very first thing my IC/our MC said to me when we went in for the first time after dday was that her A were not about me. You will hear this on SI, you will read it in books, and it is always true. Her A was about a need within herself, and not a healthy need.

What the OM offered to her was a blank canvas on to which she could project her fantasies. There was none of the complicating history and intimacy of a real relationship. Their A occurred in a bubble. What kind of man was OM, what kind of man was the man for her? A man who cheats on his pregnant wife. A man with poor to non-existant boundaries. A man who puts getting his dick wet above any other values, and puts his family and job at risk to fulfill a physical urge. A man who is too afraid to be honest with his pregnant wife about how he is feeling, so he finds a similarly damaged married woman to try and fill the holes in his life. seems like most people reconcile.

A lot of people try to R, some make it. There are many in Separation and Divorce too who did not R. Some of my "best friends" on SI tried to R for years and finally pulled the plug. Others, like myself, are making the best of the situation. If her A was a dealbreaker and you are ready to D, that is fine. If you think you may be interested in R, give it 6 - 12 months to see if your WW can do the work to fix herself.

[This message edited by atsenaotie at 1:29 PM, September 4th (Wednesday)]

Painfuljourney posted 9/4/2013 14:02 PM

Reconciliation isn't for the faint at heart. The alternative for me was going to be just as painful for me. So it was like damned if you do, damned if you don't. I knew in my heart I still loved my WH, even the 2nd day after DD.

After the initial shock (I'm still in shock), I got the entire story as much as I could digest. So I knew what I was dealing with. I was dealing with a truly remorseful husband.

It wasn't until I told him it wasn't my fault, he could no longer blame me. It was like a fog lifted he said. He had so much anger and was compartmentalizing it. Taking it out on his daughters and me.

I told him I still loved him and didn't hate him because I meant it. He cried so hard, so much remorse. It was a day after our 24th anniversary that DD hit. I knew I would fight for my marriage. Too much good there to salvage. He clearly went through a mid life crisis of sorts, depression, anger, selfish fucking bastard phase... The man I married was gone for years.

But with reconciliation our marriage has hope again. We had no connection for years, just anger and resentment, disrespect.

With marriage books, "His Needs, Her Needs - "The Five Love Languages" we read together and discovered both of us had unmet needs. We are back to newlywed status (with a bittersweet taste). I'm still triggering and sad at times, but overall he is doing his best to help me heal and he is healing himself as well.

But to me if someone breaks the vows, it is BS right to leave and divorce. It isn't wrong. But it isn't the only solution if there is something left in the carnage that is fixable.

TrustGone posted 9/4/2013 14:02 PM

The other posters have given you very good advice. Do not make a decision to D or R immediately. Watch you WW actions for at least 6 months. Words at this point mean nothing. Waywards will lie, blame shift, etc.. to avoid telling you the whole truth. Read in the healing library (left hand corner). It has lots of good articles and advice on how to handle the WS (wayward spouse). What you have done so far is very good.

Just remember that right now your wife is in what we call the "fog". It is where this new relationship is all unicorns farting rainbows. It is not a true relationship because they are using this to avoid everyday life as a spouse. They are not taking care of children, paying bills, done laudrey, etc.. They don't realize that this comes eventually to any relationship. They are not soul mates or anything else, other than two broken people clinging to the fantasy of an A (affair). Confrontation and discovery usually burst that fantasy bubble they have been living in.

Do not let yourself be drawn into blaming yourself or letting her blame you for her A. It is 100% hers to own. Pre-A issues are 50/50, but the actual A is 100% theirs. You lived in the same marriage and you did not cheat on her.

I am sorry you have to be part of this crazy mix-up shit sandwich we have all been served, but you have come to the best place for advice and support.

Hope2B posted 9/4/2013 15:28 PM

I am so sorry this happened to you.

I just wanted to mention about something you said:

The fact is I could ruin her entire life. I could expose him to his wife, they teach together and work in the same building and I could tell of their friends what they have been doing. I could tell her principal and the school board. I could effectively destroy her career and destroy all of her friendships.

As a teacher, unless they are both working at a private or parochial school, no one will be losing their job, and it's unlikely that they will even be sanctioned. Their co-workers and colleagues already know or suspect something is going on, and unless they are caught in flagrante delicto, no one will be suspended or terminated. For the most part, careers and friendships would not be destroyed, and most likely, not affected in the way you would hope.

Hope2B ...

[This message edited by Hope2B at 3:30 PM, September 4th (Wednesday)]

tushnurse posted 9/4/2013 15:43 PM

Welcom Cytron

You are correct, you are in your own personal hell, and will be for a while.
After reading your post, it appears you have been lurking for a while.

If you haven't read in the healing library please do.

Know that this has NOTHING to do with you. Her decision to cheat, is hers alone. She has to own that. Nothing you did or didn't do caused her to do this.

It sounds like you have already gotten your ducks in a row, and that can be very helpful when you do confront her. The question is do you know what you want? If she is immediately remorseful, and asks to attempt to R is that something that you are willing to do? If so what will your requirements be? If not then do you have a complete plan in place for her to leave after confrontation on Saturday?

I'm not saying one way is right or wrong, I am just saying that it is VERY helpful to have your plan with the possible scenarios in place prior to confrontation.

I knew my H was cheating, or had completely lost his mind in the months leading up to our DDay, I just couldn't find the proof. I had been to an attorney to find out what my rights were, I was all set and ready. I also knew that if he wanted to attempt R, I was going to be all in. However I also knew that if he wasn't willing to attempt R. I was throwing him out on his ear that day.

Having plans in place helps us as BS's to be stronger when we feel at our very weakest. If you want to D, great. For some it is a deal breaker, and for many of us here, we ended up having to travel the road toward D before we really had our spouses get it.

Be prepared for the next bit in your life to be quite a ride. Be kind to you. Make sure you are eating, staying hydrated, and getting sleep. If you are unable to get these things done, please call your Dr. It is hard to keep perspective when your mind is sleep deprived, starved, and wounded.

Be kind to yourself. Get STD tested, and insist she do as well if she is staying.

I am of the thought that the OW deserves to know as well. You will see differing opinions but man I sure wish someone would have come to me with proof, instead of thinking I was loosing my mind for 5 months.

((((and strength))))

Reegz posted 9/4/2013 16:12 PM

Hi Cytron,

You've received plenty of great advice from other brothers and sisters who are also members of a club that none of us want to be in. But I'd say:

1. Get STD tested and demand that she get tested as well. In my situation, this made it very real for her.

2. You need to tell the OM's wife. She is potentially at risk for STDs and it will also let her know what is going - if she doesn't know already. It can keep things in check if you're choosing to try to resolve this with your wife OR she could potentially provide key evidence and support for you, if you choose to get divorced. Either way, she deserves to know.

3. Unless she works for a private school/religious school, the chance of getting her fired is slim to none. The same goes for him. Don't focus on the damage that you COULD do, focus on healing yourself and your relationship if you choose to go that route.

4. If you are considering letting her back into a relationship with you, I think presenting/confronting her with legal papers and proof of affair is one way to scare her back and to show her that you're not kidding about leaving her. That you could go either way and that it is her responsibility to take responsibility for the affair and to win you back.

5. If you're going for the Big D, you're going in strong. Which is what you should do, if you're sure about leaving her. If you're not, then don't make any major/life changing decisions within the first 30 days.

Good Luck.

cytron posted 9/4/2013 16:15 PM

Thank you to everyone who has supported me and shown interest in my story today. This is definitely the scariest and most horrifying time of my life. I feel like my ducks are lined up, but then again, I feel my life is falling apart.

What really hurts is we have two kids together that are going to pay the ultimate price for her affair. They will definitely have it harder than me and I do not know if I am strong enough to handle them and what is going to happen.

I guess time will tell, but I am definitely confronting her and seeing what happens.

OK now posted 9/4/2013 16:51 PM

You have had excellent advice from atsenaotie and others; the only thing extra I would add is to be hard and tough during your Saturday discussion even if you are dying inside. Now is not the time to demonstrate emotional weakness since it will surely be exploited.

Expect your wife to attempt to justify her adultery by your 'unfair treatment and neglect'. Don't give an inch and keep the divorce option on the table.

I agree with others; you need to tell the OM's wife. She deserves the truth so she can make appropriate decisions concerning her future. Don't condemn her to live in a marriage of lies and deceit.

PricklePatch posted 9/4/2013 17:26 PM

So sorry to hear of your heartbreak. Please get a VAR or a nanny cam for the confrontation. That way no accusations can be made of domestic violence.

Drink lots of water! Exercise can also relieve stress in this time of turmoil. Make copies of texts and evidence and leave them off site.

Make no rash decisions right away. If you are leaning toward recovery, think about what it would take for that to indeed happen.

Take care of yourself.

Skan posted 9/4/2013 18:22 PM

Cytron, I'm very proud of you. It may not seem like it, to you, but you have managed to get your evidence, figure out a great plan of action, conceal your intent until a time when your children will not be caught up in the confrontation, and take positive steps towards that confrontation. In a shitty situation, you have done very, very well. Here's another thing to take a look at If You Love Them Divorce Them, Read it and take it to heart.

Let's talk about the confrontation itself. I am a big believer in shock and awe, coupled with keeping the other person off center. Going in to Saturday, what are your plans if she immediately crumples, professes remorse, and promises to do anything needed? What are your plans if she resists and tells you that you're out of your mind and you are probably pulling this stunt because YOU betrayed her? What are your plans if she tells you to go F-off and flounces out the door to be with lover-boy? She may do any of these things, all of them, or none of them, but you have to have a basic plan for the main scenarios. An example might be that If remorse + NC letter + agreement for IC putting divorce on hold for a while, or if any other reaction than the above or flouncing out of the house, serve papers, or if flouncing out of the house, serve papers and immediately petition for sole use of house and full custody. Just some parameters so you can serve up consequences immediately.

Note. As a previous person has said, this is a time that you must be at your most forceful, steadfast, and unbending. You cannot show weakness. You cannot allow her to distract you into circular arguments or discussions about why you not giving her a balloon on her 5th anniversary led up to infidelity, or any other nonsense. These are war negotiations and there is no other subject that needs to come up right now than the subject at hand. You need to be strong weakness is never appealing and during a confrontation doubly so. You should also protect yourself in case she claims that you hit her, threatened her, etc. Get a VAR (voice activated recorder) and hid it in the room. And if she hits you, call the police and have her arrested for domestic violence.

This is all such horrible, tough stuff. I'm so very sorry. It's the shits that anyone of us has to think like this, because of the actions of people who are supposed to be our soft place to fall. And please schedule your STD/HIV test. Hell, schedule hers as well and hand her the appointment card when you confront! Just make sure that you get all the results because you cannot trust that she will tell you the truth. (((hugs)))

Thefly559 posted 9/4/2013 19:35 PM

I feel for you brother. There is not too much more advice I can contribute that you have not heard already. You have gotten some great advice , but I will tell you that Skan touched on something that happened to me and I do not want to see it happen to you . That is the next morning after I finally caught my stbxw in a hotel room with her boyfriend of two years I confronted her and I was not even angry. I was beaten and sad and a weak pathetic mess , so we had an argument obviously , my kids heard and came down the stairs crying . I had stopped at that point and went to work as usual. When I got home the cops removed me from my home with an order of protection .( no violence ever in 18 yrs) I haven't been home since! 5 months now ! My point is that this woman who is your "wife" right now might not be ! so be smarter than her ! Show no weakness do not cry or beg , be assertive! Do not believe her bull! I tell you this because I have been through the same . I wish you luck in whatever choice you make . For me my stbxw chose her boyfriend over me and her family. I hope your outcome is better.

cytron posted 9/4/2013 22:02 PM

Great advice from everyone...thank you! I am surprised to hear everyone say schedule a STD/HIV test. I guess I shouldn't be shocked but I am.

I tend to agree with most of you as I need to be aggressive, stand my ground and not give in. That is very hard for me to do as I am not an assertive person at all.

I was also surprised about the VAR and/or nanny cam, but I guess that makes sense as I have no idea what she is going to do when I tell her.

cytron posted 9/4/2013 22:03 PM

This link that was provided just goes back to forum.

brkn_heartd posted 9/4/2013 22:12 PM

I am so sorry you are going through this. Decisions are very difficult to make. It is important to know you do not need to rush into one. While you are drawing up the paperwork and everything that you need to, you have some leverage on what to do with the information once you disclose. The other betrayed spouse needs to be informed. You may want to tell her as soon as you tell your WS. Telling her early will tip your hand . My thoughts are with you. In the mean time, please take care of yourself. The pain is terrible. Remember, this is about her brokenness, this is NOT about you.

Dark Inertia posted 9/4/2013 22:45 PM

I have read a lot of advice on here, but it seems like most people reconcile. This is so hard to believe as I read the stories and I cry for the people that this is happening to. I can't even stand to look at my wife knowing what she did...especially with someone who has a newborn child. She has single handedly destroyed my family and another person's family.

If you decide to go the route of divorce you should check out the Divorce subforum here. The posters there are extremely savvy, and I find that the best advice given in this entire forum is in the divorce section. They know their shit when it comes to the law, too, especially custody, visitation, alimony, splitting finances. It is an endless resource.

h0peless posted 9/4/2013 23:18 PM

I'm so sorry you're here but really happy that you found us. This shit sucks but your instincts seem to be better in many ways than most. The protective measures you're taking are extremely important and will be extremely helpful to you whether you decide to reconcile or divorce. I know it doesn't feel like it right now but your strength shows through in your posts. It took me months to get where you are now.

I recommend you go into the confrontation with all of your evidence printed out in one hand and divorce papers in the other. This doesn't mean you actually have to go through with the divorce (there is generally a cooling off period and you can stop it at any time) but it will show your wife that you're serious and that you aren't afraid to make a go of it without her. You probably are actually afraid of that but she doesn't have to know that. Be strong, be firm and watch for her actions. By the way, I think the advice that people often give on here to wait 6 months to file is somewhat questionable. I waited four and it only prolonged my suffering. Maybe it's good advice if she is groveling on the floor and begging for you to take her back and then consistently does everything in her power to prove that she is worthy of a second chance but otherwise, I think you are better off getting the process moving as soon as possible.

As others have said, the greasy piece of shit OM's wife deserves to know. What sort of scumbag cheats on his pregnant wife? Make sure you have a nanny cam or a voice activated recorder set up during the confrontation. False DV charges are not uncommon. Start documenting anything and everything with regards to the kids.

Lastly, this is absolutely not your fault. You think it is right now because your self esteem is in the shitter, you're trying to figure out what you did to deserve this and you want something to fix so you have some illusion of control. She will very likely try to convince you that it's your fault as well. That's called blameshifting. It's common and it is 100 percent unfiltered bullshit. You are the prize here, not her. Right now, she is in affair land. Her head is so far up her ass she can see her teeth. You deserve better.

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