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Trading Up? Self-esteem killer

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lhhell posted 9/26/2013 14:39 PM

You know how it's often said that WH will "affair down" with their AP? What about when they affair up?

My WH cheated with escorts. And not just any escorts but 2 of the most expensive/premiere ones in town. The unfortunate thing about escort cheating is that you can see what they look like and find out everything about their services. These two women are beautiful, younger, skinnier, sexier - you name it, they are it. And the complete opposite of me in looks (and coincidentally, my husband's type - I fall into the "oh yeah" category. You know when you are in MC and he talks about his type and he describes a women opposite of me and then says "oh yeah, and ones that look like you"). So I really feel like my WH affaired up (well, other than the hooker thing).

So the question I have is how do you deal with the situation when you are the lesser choice? How do you cope when you know that you are not what he wants physically? I get that there was no emotion or intellectual exchange going on in his cheating so perhaps I can feel a little better that I can probably out-debate these women. But I'm dying here with the blows to my self-esteem.

WS are welcome to comment. I'm struggling with this so much, when I know that he looks at me and sees his second "oh yeah" choice.

sodamnlost posted 9/26/2013 14:44 PM

It's a struggle for sure. Mine didnt actually choose someone more attractive than me - he would have taken anyone desperate enough. Yours is not much different I would guess. A woman of value doesn't sell her body for sex. PERIOD. Mine chose a shorter, heavier woman who had a voice like a man and looked like a pug. Now heavier women mke me feel "less than". I am not even thin - pretty average - maybe on the small side of average but NOT skinny. It's an issue we have to work hard on. I am just learning my worth as a woman isn't related to his delusional choices.


Undefinabl3 posted 9/26/2013 14:48 PM

I wish I could help...but I think I would also be completely defeated.

I suppose technically I also affaired up. My ONS with XH was physically more socially handsome then XH. It was not why I ONS with AP, it was the convience.

My first thought was that he went to these escorts because they were easy, readily avalible, and they would stroke his ego without any work on his end. Escorts are not going to be unattractive, so it could be just the nature of his choice of AP's that resulted in their 'up'ness rather then 'down'ness.

If you really look at it, while these women may look good, they are at the very basic level prostitutes. They can lie to themselves and say that what they do is different, but that's really all they are.


lhhell posted 9/26/2013 14:53 PM

Oh I know - a hooker is a hooker, no matter what she calls herself. It's not these women I struggle with. It's the choice my WH made - he choose someone way more beautiful, younger, sexier than me. I can't compete with that (and I know, I can compete with a hooker, I can't compete with the package that he chose).

sullymeishadomi posted 9/26/2013 15:28 PM

So, if you werent his type; you were "meh" to him, why did he date you and marry you?

Lets take YOU out of the picture, because this crap is never about the bs, though we internalise it to be about us.

These females are gorgeous and he admits with delight, his type? But he has to PAY to be with 'his type'. Hmmm....So, his type will not acknowledge him unless his putting up serious Benjamins?
Your h has some issues.

Your h did NOT affair up. A prostitute is a prostitute no matter what she is charging. Would you truly compare yourself to a hooker? I hope not

And again pointing out your wh had to PAY for his type. That doesnt say much for him.

Hon, dont take to heart that he has a type. I know a man who's preference is different than his wife, but his wife rocks his world.

Wh is just a jerk.

[This message edited by sullymeishadomi at 3:43 PM, September 26th (Thursday)]

mysticpenguin posted 9/26/2013 15:31 PM

Oh honey. I get it. Everyone says all WSs affair down bc their AP was a cheater and a liar.... But OW1 and OW3 didn't know he was married. And OW3 is as pretty as me, but with a better body. (Not at the time, but me presently / on average in our M.)

But.... Honey these girls were escorts. They are not more than you. They sell their bodies because they cannot do honest work. They have no idea what real intimacy is. And when they're in later years, what on earth will they do? No resume, no references, no skills. They are much, much less than you.


Eta - cross posted! I'm on my phone so I'm slow.

You know what -- you are beautiful in a different way than those girls. Every one of us is. If your WH wasn't attracted to you I can't imagine you ever would have dated, let alone married. Not everyone likes a hypersexualized, porn star appearance.

[This message edited by mysticpenguin at 3:34 PM, September 26th (Thursday)]

notquiteoverit posted 9/26/2013 15:38 PM

He traded down - way down. He traded for HOOKERS. He is paying for sex. They don't even like him and everything they do with him is pretend. How much lower can he go? You are better than that and deserve better than him. Believe it or not, there are a lot of men out there who want a real relationship with a real woman.

uncertainone posted 9/26/2013 15:46 PM

Oh I know - a hooker is a hooker, no matter what she calls herself. It's not these women I struggle with. It's the choice my WH made.

That, actually, is your answer right there. Your husband's choice. That's actually the thing you have to deal with. Your husband was capable of making this choice...and then made this choice.

It honestly has nothing to do with up down or sideways. It's the fact you're married to a cheater.

If he chose to shoot up would there be the same self-esteem blow? It is the same type of thought process, though.

I think infidelity is so fucking hard for some because it involves a person. A person is something that can be compared. A drug, a hobby, work, gambling, drinking not so much.

He needs to fix the parts that green lighted and even considered that option a viable choice. How's his impulse control in other areas?

cluless posted 9/26/2013 15:47 PM


Unless you are cheated on it is really hard to understand how devastating it is to a woman. My husband went after his first GF, to some she would be considered a step up (she certainly thought of herself as more attractive than me b/c when I first talked to her she said "don't be jealous of me." She has blonde hair, fake boobs, she's anorexic, fake eyelashes, and has a real tan that she has been baking on her skin since she was 14 (she is now 55).

So by some men's definitions, he did a step up. I on the other hand have long blonde hair, AM attractive, I'm approximately 10 lbs. overweight (so I still look good/hot at 54), and I have REAL boobs larger than her fake ones. I questioned my husband, this is what you want? He denies it, but he did screw her six times. He also had an emotional relationship with her (yes it is clear was based on fantasy mixed with their truth) and was a very sick relationship ... if you would call it that.

My point, I would rather my husband had slept with a hooker. Women that sell their bodies have the LOWEST self-esteem and puts on an act. Do you think they liked him touching them.. NOPE! Your WH really sounds clueless to me. Men have their "fantasy" ladies in their heads, women who are airbrushed in playboy magazines, the perfect woman. There is NO such thing. Yes we all come in different sizes and packages, but what it's really about is love and the connection you get when two bodies come together.

Our husbands lost sight of that and sounds like he may need some therapy. Don't ever second-guess yourself like that! I know it's easy for us to go there, but it's not going to help you one bit get healed from this betrayal. Focus on what you can do for yourself to make YOU feel better about yourself. You can't change what God gave you, but you can take care of yourself and love yourself and be "okay" with WHO you are. What your BH did was selfish, egocentric, and it was hurtful to you in so many ways. Don't let this defeat you and make you think differently of yourself.


JanaGreen posted 9/26/2013 15:50 PM

((HUGS)) I'm sorry.

JanaGreen posted 9/26/2013 15:54 PM

I would rather my husband had slept with a hooker.

I'm not trying to pick on you and I definitely don't want to start the Who's Got It Worse Pain Olympics, but having your husband sleep with a hooker is a special brand of embarrassingly shitty all its own. It's such a low thing to do that people crack jokes about it, and lo and behold your lawfully wedded spouse actually DOES it - actually goes there - yes, all kinds of infidelity suck ass.

womaninflux posted 9/26/2013 16:00 PM

Have you considered that this escort is pure fantasy? It's not like he's having a real relationship with these people. The only reason it works is because it's fantasy...once they had the responsibilities of real life - meeting expectations and needs, paying bills, etc. that would end the attraction INSTANTLY. I don't call that affairing up at all. Not to mention that these women are fucked up in their heads in the first place to be escorts or having an affair with a married man. Our spouses' affairs have NOTHING to do with our physical appearance. Not our weight, not our appearance, not our hair color or style, not about our grooming or makeup...they are having affairs because there is something screwed up in their core being. This happened LONG before the two of you ever got together. It has nothing to do with us. Believe it.

Rebreather posted 9/26/2013 16:11 PM

A spouse cannot, by definition, affair up.

Affairs are about brokenness, lying, deception, destruction and ugliness in its deepest form. How can that possibly be "up."

So his affair partners of choice are "more attractive" than you. Well, I submit that it is their JOB to be that way. It's like being jealous of Jennifer Aniston's body. She does yoga two hours a day because it is her JOB to look like that. What's your job? Raising your children? Bringing home a paycheck?

So his hookers won some kind of genetic lottery in the looks department. Do you think they can compete with you in ANY WAY in the life department? Do you think they love themselves? Do you think they have pride in what they do? Do you think they go home at Christmas and talk about their work with their dad? If your spouse had cheated with a $2 street walker you would feel exactly the same, but the opposite. You would be saying, "wait, he threw away everything for THAT!"

Appearance of the affair partner is irrelevant. It really is. The fact is, like Uncertainone said, your husband cheated. Doesn't matter if it with someone gorgeous or someone ugly. He cheated with someone available. WHY he chose to walk this path of ugliness and destruction is where you need to shift your focus.

PrincessPeach06 posted 9/26/2013 16:11 PM

I don't think there is any such thing as trading up. As faithful, loving, loyal spouses we are so so so so much more beautiful than ANY AP could be. Outside beauty will fade - those hookers will get old and fat and won't have anything left while we will have our own beauty - both inside and out - for the rest of our lives.


And yes, my H's OW had a better body then me and I'm a size 2!!!! It just doesn't matter.

kansas1968 posted 9/26/2013 16:13 PM

Well, affair down means a lot of things, not just looks. I think the main idea about affairing down is that they are in love (or think they are) with a woman who has such low morals and ethics, is so broken, that she settles for another woman's husband. That is ALWAYS a step down.

Now escorts or prostitutes are a different matter. They are allowing your husband to play out his fantasies for money. I doubt any of them would make a great wife.
You husband wants a wife, he wants the security of family, he wants a woman that acts like a wife and shares the burdens of life with him, but he also wants to have this little fantasy world. A step out of reality. He could probably not attract these women in real life, so he pays for the fantasy. That is very sad, really.

He will have to be willing to give that up if he is to keep you. He has to decide. If he wants you, then he has to commit to you.

Don't put yourself down for not looking like these women. They spend a lot of time and money on looking like that. They are just as broken as the married other woman. So, he STILL affaired down. A plastic doll is not a wife, someone who will care for him when he is sick, will stay with him in tough times.

You are infinately better than them. They are not real people. Hugs.

Rebreather posted 9/26/2013 16:14 PM

Let me also say this; have you seen these women IRL? Because I live very near legal prostitution and I have seen these girls, who are famous due to certain TV show, live and in person many times. And dressed "professionally" in a professional setting. Let me tell you; it ain't pretty.

lhhell posted 9/26/2013 16:16 PM

Do you ever have the fight between your logical intelligent side of your brain and the emotional freaking out side?

I agree completely with everything everyone has said. It would be the same advice I would give someone else in my situation. I a smart person and understand all this about fantasy and his problem and they are whores etc etc etc

My heart, and the emotional crazy side of my brain, is shattered. I can't wrap my head around this at all. The pain of "why wasn't I good enough to be the fantasy" is excrutiating. It's not about that they were hookers. It's that when push came to shove, and he had a choice to make, his choice and fantasy was something completely different than me.

JanaGreen - thanks. All cheating is horrible. Cheating with escorts is just different, not more painful, not less, just different but the same, all at the same time. Clear as mud?

JanaGreen posted 9/26/2013 16:32 PM

his choice and fantasy was something completely different than me.

Mmmm hmmm.

I remember asking my husband, over and over, when you were on the phone with the escort service, what kind of girl did you ask them to send over? Sure that whatever he asked for would be whatever I'm not. Blonde, big boobs, etc.

Unfortunately he was way too drunk at the time to remember what he actually said.

And - ((HUGS)) - it will get better. I promise. ((HUGS))

[This message edited by JanaGreen at 4:35 PM, September 26th (Thursday)]

Rebreather posted 9/26/2013 16:32 PM

"why wasn't I good enough to be the fantasy

Why wasn't he good enough to be faithful to you?

I think most of us went through this mental battle. You'll come out of it and KNOW it isn't you.

forgivingnow posted 9/26/2013 16:37 PM

Absolutely, my logical, intelligent brain competes with my emotional, sometimes irrational brain. I have also struggled with the age and how these escorts must have looked...I mean, he picked them out by looking at their websites . They must have been SO much younger than me. But one thing that helps me is I now have the whole package, the husband who loves me,who holds my hand and hugs me at night, who wants to be with me, the family and great kids, vacations, a future...what do they have? Really, what do they have? Nothing. Maybe a couple other prostitute friends? Who would want to marry them? What will they do once they are a little older? And what rebreather said-they can't go home on holidays and share with their family what they do for a living. You are so much better than them. The focus does need to be on his 'why' and rebuilding a new marriage.
But I totally understand.

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