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"If we weren't M"; "If we didn't have children"

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PhantomLimb posted 10/6/2013 23:00 PM

I've noticed that many, many BSs on this site often say that their WS's A would have been dealbreakers if they had only been engaged at the time and/or if they didn't have children together.

As someone who didn't yet have children with WS, I find this very interesting. I found myself as desperate to save our M as I imagine I would have been with children.

So where does this confidence come from that it would have been a dealbreaker?

[This message edited by PhantomLimb at 11:00 PM, October 6th (Sunday)]

heartache101 posted 10/6/2013 23:04 PM

We can not say for certain we already had our children.
I strongly feel I would of been gone.

Kalliopeia posted 10/6/2013 23:10 PM

Often I feel that since I am not married to mone, people give me the simplest answer: you aren't married, why haven't you dumped him, why haven't you ditched him, why is this guy still in your life, why are you still in contact with him?

There is no answer that will satisfy.

I am stretched thin on his actions.. but I have no ring or children. I have a relationship I have been fighting for.

It often feels to me on SI that there is no help for me except "get out of it".

I wonder if the message would be the same if we were married. I see a lot worse things going on in the marriages here than in my relationship. Advice is different, I feel due to not being married.

emotionalgirl posted 10/6/2013 23:18 PM

I often thought that way, but now that my WH has had is EA I look at things differently. I think that if you have invested any amount of time and emotion into a relationship no matter the status or the length it is not as easy to walk away as anyone thinks.

This being said everyone is different. You can only do what you think is right for you.

PhantomLimb posted 10/6/2013 23:18 PM

You're getting at where my thinking is on this, Kalliopeia.

I feel bad for some people who come here and are in long-term (non-M) relationships or are engaged. Sometimes I do think they run the risk of being dismissed.

I tend to think that those situations can be every bit as difficult as a M affected by infidelity.

sad34 posted 10/6/2013 23:22 PM

I would have left so fast

Nature_Girl posted 10/6/2013 23:22 PM

Yeah, my IC used to have fun with me when I'd start in on the "If we did/didn't..." and the "If I'd known then..."

It's all bullshit. Well, I do think if I'd known the incredible perverted shit he was into I'd not have married him. But I most certainly did stay with him after marriage but before children, even though I knew he was cheating & a liar. I didn't realize the depths of his perversions until last year, really.

RightTrack posted 10/6/2013 23:39 PM

I can say that I would have left but for the children b/c it was while I was in the divorce attorney's office that the full reality of "shared custody" of the kids hit home. " 50/50 Shared custody" scared the living tar of me.

summerain posted 10/6/2013 23:46 PM

For me if WH and I weren't married I would of left because getting divorced in my state is very difficult and both of our quality of life would of been severely complicated, legally and financially.

But that said I'm starting to slowly but surely get happier about staying and thank 'the higher power' we are married. Who knows if he cheats on me in ten years time and I start banging my head on a wall though.

PhantomLimb posted 10/6/2013 23:57 PM

I hate to say it... but I guess I don't really believe it would be that easy to up and leave without M and kids.

I mean, as someone in their 30s... the fact that we don't have kids yet is a reason for me to want R! What are my chances now to find someone, learn to trust them, M them, have children. I think they are pretty slim...

crazynot posted 10/7/2013 00:07 AM

The reason people say this is because of the long, long pain attached to the infidelity, which in my case (my husband cheated on me six months into our 28-year marriage)blighted not only our marriage but my self-image and life. If I had my time again, I'd have called a halt on the marriage at that point. The reason I stayed wasn't just the recent wedding, parents' expectations etc, but because I loved him so completely. I thought he was my one love. My God how wrong I was!!! He left me four years ago and my life is in a much better place. My advice to anyone engaged to a cheater would definitely be 'don't be'!!! People aren't dismissing your pain, they're trying to suggest that a life without it would be better. And as for not finding someone when you're in your 30s... the world is full of people who WON'T cheat. I found one and I'm 52.

Bluebird26 posted 10/7/2013 00:19 AM

We can all guess what we might have done if we were in the situation but you never know until you are faced with it. It's like all those statistics you hear about, you aren't really concerned with them until you become one!

I always thought if my ex cheated on me I would have been gone the first time. But I have had numerous ddays. I was 'willing' to do almost anything to keep my marriage together. I was willing to accept treatment I should never have accepted in the first place. I wished I had a stronger self esteem, I wish I had other relationships to compare the one I was in too. So I knew this was not right.

Hindsight is 20/20 as they say. But I wish I could have seen the red flags before I was married as much as I love my children with all my heart if I knew the heartbreak I would have to endure over the years I doubt I would have gone through with the wedding. I am now legally tied to him until my children become adults. I have to share my children with a pathetic 'man' that I would like nothing more then to runaway from forever.

I guess those of us that have been cheated on upon in our marriage/after children are trying to 'help' others to escape a life we have already lived.

IMHO I think if the WS is acting like they are single then let them be single. You deserve better. So did I.

Do you really want to live like this for the rest of your life? Do you really want to be with someone you cannot trust in the same room as another female/male, or constantly checking their phone or checking if their actions equals their words. It's not a life with a equal partner, it's a parent/child relationship.

LosferWords posted 10/7/2013 00:28 AM

It's really easy to say how we would react in certain situations that we are not in. It's much different to actually live these experiences and deal with them first hand. Once you've been betrayed, no matter what situation you are in, the choices that you decide to make are deeply personal. Despite all of the commonalities that many of us share, everyone's situation is so different. It's really not fair to say to another person, "I would do xyz if I were in your situation", because you really don't know.

You really don't 100% know what you're going to do in any given scenario, until you are actually in that scenario.

NoAnswers37 posted 10/7/2013 03:47 AM

Phantom - I could not have said it better myself.

The pain of losing a future of children and marriage when you're "that age" is intense. I have often thought about how long I will need for recovery, then meeting a non-cheating compatible partner, then forming a relationship, getting trust back, trying for children, marriage....

The way I feel now I'll be 50 by the time that happens.

I think the main pain those of us who were not married with children have is that our near future has been stolen from us and we didn't do anything to cause it.

But I am so sorry to everyone who is in pain - we need to stick together!

HormonalWoman posted 10/7/2013 04:32 AM

The same place a couple who have never experienced infidelity get their confidence from when one of them claims they would NEVER give their partner a second chance shit bust i guess

I used to be one of those btw

[This message edited by HormonalWoman at 4:33 AM, October 7th (Monday)]

heme posted 10/7/2013 07:00 AM

I don't know it was a 100% Id have left him but I would have been more likely to least for a short period. To me being married and having children makes it a whole lot harder to just take a break. Sometimes I wish his work would send him somewhere for a week or two just so I could get a break and gather my thoughts.

PhantomLimb posted 10/7/2013 07:22 AM

The pain of losing a future of children and marriage when you're "that age" is intense. I have often thought about how long I will need for recovery, then meeting a non-cheating compatible partner, then forming a relationship, getting trust back, trying for children, marriage....


I was with WS for 11 years before he cheated. I can say with 100% confidence that he had never cheated before. His actions came as a total shock to me, our families and all of our friends.

If I couldn't trust the man I was with for over a decade... how can I possibly trust the "next one", should there even be one.

I feel like his A was the end of my chance at my own children. Sure, I can adopt, anything can happen, etc.

But I envy those of you who were able to share having a child with the man you loved. That you have your children to focus on and, hopefully, keep you grounded and feeling loved.

From the position of a 30-something who gave over their entire 20s helping a man establish a career-- and held off on children for the sake of that career-- it feels like a double-whammy. I've lost my partner. I've forfeited my future. Now some OW, who already has a child!, and is reaping the benefits of all of the time and energy I put into helping to build him up all of these years.

[This message edited by PhantomLimb at 7:23 AM, October 7th (Monday)]

anewday78 posted 10/7/2013 07:41 AM

Ugh, I have to admit, I'm guilty of giving this type of advice and I can understand we it frustrates you:

Often I feel that since I am not married to mone, people give me the simplest answer: you aren't married, why haven't you dumped him, why haven't you ditched him, why is this guy still in your life, why are you still in contact with him?
I think people are so quick to jump on that line of reasoning because marriage and children create such challenging ties that bind you to another person so much more than if all you have to do is give 30 days notice on an apartment lease and walk away. We sometimes forget that just because there's no legal document, couples can still build lives together that are deeply rooted, making it difficult to just up and leave. I, for one, want to apologize to anybody who I' might've rashly dismissed with this type of response. I'll definitely be more conscious about it in the future.

cayc posted 10/7/2013 07:44 AM

I spent 6 years going in circles firstly by rugsweeping and then by trying for R for the very reason you mention PL. I wanted children, I wanted the plans we had, I wanted my investment to pay off. I married when I was 35 and the first time D was truly raised I was 40. OMG 40, life was over.

And because of that mindset, I wasted 6 years. Now on the other side at 46, how much easier it would have been to start over at 40 instead of 46.

That's why I give the newly married, no kids members of SI the GO, GO NOW advice. It isn't because I think there are less ties to the M to be empathetic towards (b/c there aren't, betrayal is betrayal, lies are lies, being blindsided is being blindsided). It's because in the midst of the pain, it's too easy to think you need to throw good money after bad when in fact you don't.

But for the record, I pretty much tell everyone to D. I no longer believe in forgiveness. Looking back, I don't think I would have had R in me. I don't think adultery is a forgivable thing. (My apologies to all those in successful R, I understand why you might choose it, and for the record you are stronger, better people than me). I don't think actions taken with malice aforethought are forgivable. So that's why I rarely post in JFO, my advice is generally too harsh. I wait until people are in general and the facts of the relationship are clearer.

So that's why you perceive a bias, D is the more common outcome of an A than a successful R, those of us on the otherside of D all see we wasted too much time getting to D and that's our regret that we're sharing.

Mostly though, I've read your threads PL. People are enraged on your behalf. That's why you've gotten the slam the door, don't look back advice. When people reference that you don't have ties like children, they are referencing that the D process is easier - not that the emotional component is - and that's the genesis of the "easy" reference.

fight4respect posted 10/7/2013 08:14 AM

This is probably just a reflection of my limits but I too struggle to believe in R (with all respect to the many people here who hold different views). I do not have it in me to give cheaters a second chance and I tend to think that people capable of this type of behaviour only change at great cost and effort, if they change at all. So I tend to echo the views of those who say 'run' but I fully agree that pain is pain. I was not married and have no children and yet the pain of betrayal and the shock of giving up on the future I thought I had were agony.

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