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ruinedandbroken posted 10/15/2013 17:59 PM

Why is discussing infidelity so taboo? Why aren't there any "Infidelity Awareness Months" we people can learn about the effect this has on people and families? Why don't people bring casseroles and send cards and give condolences, but instead tell you things like, "You need to get over it" etc. Why are we "bitter" if we discuss such a devastation in our lives?

Seriously. Maybe if there were a brighter light shone on this crap some of it can be avoided. People wouldn't be so quick to dismiss your pain. There would be more support out there and maybe some education on how to avoid affairs and how to deal with the aftermath.

It really just pisses me off.

Nature_Girl posted 10/15/2013 18:48 PM


phmh posted 10/15/2013 18:59 PM

That's part of the reason I am so open with what happened to me -- to help bring awareness of what happens; that it doesn't happen because of a problem with the BS but rather the WS. I have educated lots of people about cheating.

Before it happened to me, I believed cheating happened because the BS was a harpy, didn't put out, or somehow drove the WS to it. Putting the blame unfairly on the BS, when it rests entirely with the WS.

I've actually had some people thank me for being so open about it, claiming that what I said will help make their marriage stronger because they are aware of certain things.

I wish I had known what I know now back in the day as I never would have married such a damaged man.

Sad in AZ posted 10/15/2013 19:07 PM

You see it here on the boards all the time--many people are embarrassed that they were cheated on. They don't want to admit it; they don't want the scrutiny; they don't want their kids to find out about it.

I think opening it up to the light of day is refreshing, but to each his own.

ruinedandbroken posted 10/15/2013 19:19 PM

Yes, I was mortified when I first found out I was cheated on. Completely MORTIFIED! I think that is a good reason to have public awareness about it. I really wish there was some outspoken awareness so like breast cancer has it's pink ribbon...infidelity can have a symbol or some kind, hand out pamphlets, do research and take donations for counseling and education. I hate feeling so alone and misunderstood (except for people here on S.I.) I'm SICK and TIRED of being told how I should feel, how far along I should be in my healing, what I should be doing, etc. etc. It's because people don't get it. For something that happens so much and causes so much devastation, why is no one talking about it?

Phoenix1 posted 10/15/2013 19:24 PM

I really wish there was some outspoken awareness so like breast cancer has it's pink ribbon...infidelity can have a symbol or some kind

How about a brown ribbon in honor of the ongoing shit sandwich BSs have to constantly swallow!

Reality posted 10/15/2013 19:27 PM


NOTE! I don't want to diminish any of the pain the male members here have gone through, because YEAH; horrible, horrible, traumatizing situation to have to deal with infidelity. (I'm sorry if the first section reads at all that way.)

It does strike me how much we women are socialized to be nice, to be accommodating, to put other people first, to be supportive. It's rammed down our throats from almost every front from the beginning. That coupled with the lovely "boys will be boys" montage and any woman who protests the "inevitable" trip through the Ninth Level of Infidelity Hell gets chastised for not rolling with it and "making it work" for the good of everyone else.

"Think of the children."

"All men do this."

"You must have not been seeing to his needs/Why weren't you taking better care of him?!"

"Joy is found through service/Turn the other cheek/Judge not/ETC"

Blah, blah, blah.

Some of the lovely sentiments cross gender lines and I know men get their own share of dumb reactions, usually focused around some idiotic accusation of lack of sexual mastery or control of the family. The chastisements to be more "of a man" to "take control" to do something violent to the AP, to solve the marriage issues by being dominant sexually or to suck it up and "be tough" or view showing emotion to be a sign of weakness or lack of character are all just as crappy.

We get shows focused on glamorizing infidelity, furthering the cliche of infidelity, and trivializing the effects of infidelity constantly.

Both men and women get push back for talking about it socially still and I plain don't get it.

In some weird (but I guess not so disconnected) ways it's like how violent assault is a "valid" crime and rape is "contextual" to way too many people who still can't wrap their heads around both being crimes. Or how not too long ago, child SA was considered just part of some family dynamics. Or all kinds of diminishing and victimizing socially accepted stances, no matter active or passively followed

My hope/belief is that infidelity is just one more block that gets knocked off that "social blindness" wall that's used to minimize people and their experiences.

LeopoldB posted 10/15/2013 19:50 PM

We need ribbons and banners reading:


ruinedandbroken posted 10/15/2013 21:32 PM

In some weird (but I guess not so disconnected) ways it's like how violent assault is a "valid" crime and rape is "contextual" to way too many people who still can't wrap their heads around both being crimes. Or how not too long ago, child SA was considered just part of some family dynamics. Or all kinds of diminishing and victimizing socially accepted stances, no matter active or passively followed

I know, right! Infideility *is* abuse. Pure and simple. I was undoubtedly emotionally abused, traumatized, victimized, and used. But most people, unless they've been through it, don't see it that way. We don't glamorize physical abuse or sexual abuse. Why is this glamorized and rationalized and excused away?

Just ticks me off I guess.

RavenWood posted 10/15/2013 21:53 PM

I told a few people at work. The reaction was a small amount of compassion... A couple of stories shared and a "You'll get through it". Then the next day it was back to business as usual! No support, no break, no offers of help. 5 months in, and between the infidelity and shock of WW filing for divorce and my head is still spinning and find it hard to focus at times.

On the other side, a Coworker's elderly mother IN Law who was on her death bed and had plenty of time to say their final good byes, passed away. The coworker got hugs, cards, flowers, and of course paid time off (bereavement) to deal with the situation. Coworker wasn't even emotionally upset, she wasn't that close to her MIL, and they had seen it coming for a long time.

Where is the justification!? I feel like I'm owed a box of chocolates, a few hugs, and some days off to get my shit straight!

LifeIsBroken posted 10/15/2013 22:19 PM

The one 'sentiment' that really ticks me off is, "This will make you stronger." Really ? I didn't know I need to be 'stronger.' I do tell anyone who asks what happened. I'm not taking the fall for xh's raging hormones or whatever they call it age 60. With his 13-year-old-in-luv mentality, the assist of viagra & a trashy married other woman, he sure messed up our family. What's 'sexy' about any of that ?

Just like people have become immune to the violence they see on tv and in films, they're becoming immune to cheating, as well.

Feeling Consumed posted 10/15/2013 22:41 PM

My friends seem to think my 27 year long relationship with my ex was like a high school crush that I should get over right away. They are all "worried about me" because after a year I was still mentioning my ex! They said they would give me 2 more months to get over it!! Really? I never did find out because I pretty much stopped mentioning anything to them anymore, which to me makes me wonder what kind of friends they are.

Gemini71 posted 10/15/2013 23:07 PM

I feel like I'm owed a box of chocolates, a few hugs, and some days off to get my shit straight!


Infidelity is not just a breakup. It is a Betrayal. It devastates a person to the core of their being. A friend of mine sent me a link to an article that sums it up nicely.

persevere posted 10/15/2013 23:09 PM

The lack of awareness to those who haven't experienced it has been frustrating. I have friends who are in my corner no matter what, and those who I think that I should "just get over it". Really??? I try to remember that they have no frame of reference of the destruction that infidelity truly causes.

sunsetslost posted 10/15/2013 23:14 PM

Because we are thinking, feeling human beings. Because there is shame on the boy side, but "biology" took over. That's bullshit It's never ok to step out, man or woman. Immature selfish actions and societal perceptions. We have the courage to speak out, to share with each other. We, the betrayed are stronger, better people.

wontdefineme posted 10/15/2013 23:26 PM

I'm all for public stoning. Not to death, or maybe public humiliation for both adulterers. Or maybe judges that don't reward the people who rip marriages apart and laws to be able to sue them for damages and pain inflicted, I could go on.

Ashland13 posted 10/16/2013 08:32 AM

Because it's having to face reality. Hard, cold, brutal reality.

In my universe, only realists discuss this and the others work very hard to deny. It seems like only the people who are betrayed will face it and the others rug sweep. The rug is very dirty.

I made a joke to a counselor once that that's why XPerv's family had hardwood floors growing up.

Oh, the non-realists will hedge, they'll want gossip, but as soon as you open your mouth to say something that matters, or isn't rainbows and sunshine, off they go and suddenly get very busy...anyone notice this?

SeanFLA posted 10/16/2013 12:26 PM

I believe a lot of it is because people think they will "catch" infidelity somehow and don't even want the thought of it to seep into their marriages. So what they do is ignore it and downplay your hurt. They are VERY uncomfortable with the thought of their own spouse doing it, or the fact that they themselves have already done it or have been tempted to do it. I hear many people say..."My spouse would NEVER cheat on me because our marriage is so good." Whenever I hear somebody say that I say politley..."Think so huh? They've probably already done it or are at least fantasizing about doing it on a daily basis." They say 80% of all marriages are touched by infidelity in some manner by one or both partners.

I also think that if it's not a "physical" death people just can't relate unless it's happened to them. Everyone has experienced the death of a family member in one form or another. But not everyone can comprehend this type of emotional death and they can't show compassion for something they haven't experienced first hand.

Sad in AZ posted 10/16/2013 13:21 PM

I don't know who you all hang out with but I never encountered anything but compassion and understanding from friends and associates. No one told me to 'get over it' (other than the X ) Even a random taxi driver commiserated with me.

I was lucky with my job in that I was the manager, so I had some leeway, but I still don't know how I didn't lose my job when I kept running out of the office to try to catch the X and the OW together. I did work a lot of overtime to keep up with my workload, though.

I didn't talk about it constantly, but when I felt the need to, my friends were there. I found SI two years into the betrayal and was able to come here for support too, so that helped.

[This message edited by Sad in AZ at 1:23 PM, October 16th (Wednesday)]

Gemini71 posted 10/16/2013 13:53 PM

I think one of the major reasons that people don't talk openly about the damage caused by Infidelity is that if they are trying to R, they don't want to publicly out WS.

If they are trying to D, it just sounds like sour grapes. There are people out there who make false claims during a D, which just really pisses me off. It belittles the pain of those of us who really have to deal with this crap. And unless you have conclusive proof, it can backfire against you.

So it seems like the only safe time to talk about our experiences is after the D, or when we're so far into our recovery, that we don't give a damn anymore. And of course there's the third option, in an anonymous forum with others going through the same shitty experience.

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