paying a stripper to have sex in Houston in 2012
a one night stand in Portland with a woman he met at the hotel bar. Without a condom.
For the past 10 years I have trusted WH while he has traveled extensively for work. It has only been the past six months that I have questioned him about a possible affair. He denies any affairs or anything other than the two times mentioned above, and occasional stip club visits with lap dances only and very regular porn use.
I am really starting to see that WH is actually a SAWH.
This weekend I have felt like I am in full blown grieving. I haven't felt like this since my father died in 1994, it hurts so bad.
SAWH seems extremely remorseful at this point, but I have a strong suspicion I don't know the whole story yet, even though we discussed at length that any further revelations would move us to separation/divorce with no chance for reconciliation. There is still the cell phone that I heard vibrating in the attic space in his closet which I am quite certain he just got to before me.
I'm going to be making a DR appointment tomorrow for STD testing and I really might need some medication support right now. I can't sleep or eat hardly at all, and the despair is disabling.
Where to go from here? I just don't know yet. I feel so bad for my kids right now. They know something huge is going on, but we haven't shared any details and don't plan to. I keep telling them it's nothing they did to cause our struggles and that they are loved by both of their parents.
A little advice: Don't think you can figure it all out or make any kind of plans for the future just yet. You need time - time to discover and fully believe that you know what is going on, time to digest it, and time to heal before you are healthy enough to plan for the future.
Look up the "180" rules - they are on this site somewhere. They give great guidance on how to behave during this crisis.
Take a few months to take care of yourself and your children. You just experienced a major emotional trauma. In dramatic terms, you need to stop the bleeding first before you start rehab or decide to amputate.
Keep coming to this site - only people who have been through this can understand the pain you are in.
Hugs - it will be an emotional rollercoaster, but it will get better. I promise.
I knew there would be more to your story and I'm so sorry you've been devastated. It sounds as though you husband was only as honest as his options - and traveling all the time gave him plenty of options and he took them.
Please get yourself tested for STDs and good luck in whatever path you choose to take in your healing.
[This message edited by devasted30 at 9:48 AM, October 21st (Monday)]
I think people are way too quick to slap the 'sex addict' label on anyone who is a serial cheater.
I do agree with this. Porn watching doesn't mean someone is a sex addict. I think it helps some BSs to say the WS has an addition instead of saying "he cheats, a lot". An addition somehow relieves the WS of the actions - after all, 'he couldn't help it - he's an addict'.
That said, I think whatever 'label' he is given is going to be painful for StuckInHell.
SIH, I think you're doing right by your children by letting them know that they are loved. The rest of the story might be a little too much for them - and how can you explain it when you're still trying to wrap your head around it.
If he has a secret phone, nothing he's confessed to relates to that, so what is the phone for? And forgive me, how do you know it exists?
I'm so sorry for your pain. It's so unfair that the trust we place in others is often times so undeserved. And it's so easy to take advantage of someone that trusts you.
I am ALMOST certain he has a phone because I was sitting in our bedroom one day about 5 weeks ago and could hear a vibrating phone coming from his closet. I searched his closet but found nothing. I had to leave for kid pick up and didn't get a chance to search more. During the night it hit me that the attic space entrance is in his closet and that might possibly be where I heard the phone coming from. The next morning after WH left for work I got a ladder out. Boxes and coats were in a different order than I left them the night before directly below the attic space entrance. I believe that when I left boxes in a different order after I searched the closet that it tipped him off that I was looking and he removed the phone. I looked in the attic space and didn't find a phone, but low and behold there is an outlet that could easily been used to keep a phone charged. Also, I have heard this vibrating on two other occasions from another upstairs room directly across from the attic. It wasn't until I was sitting in the bedroom and heard it that I looked for it. When I confronted WH about it, he has vehemently denied it and has told me I don't know what I am talking about when I tell him I agonized over how the boxes were on the shelf and then they were in a different order the next day. I think he is only giving me the details that he knows I could trace at this point, and nothing more. There are ATM records showing cash withdrawals at strip clubs. I think he does have a phone and is using it to arrange sex hook ups. I would like to think I am wrong, but at this point I trust myself before I trust him, since he has denied for so long.
Many hugs - sounds like a trip to a lawyer is in order....
I read is the 180 to give things a year before you make decisions. Was that true for you all?
There is no set time. For some it is an immediate deal breaker, for others 2 months, 6 months, a year...whatever. Only you can set that time frame.
I am sorry you are going through this, and I am sure you don't have the whole story yet. But if wants to work on this marriage he is going to have to be transparent and that includes owing up to the hidden phone and handing it over.
He very well might be only admitting to what you can prove. Thatís actually more common that full out confessions, at least at this stage. He is in damage control mode and is thinking only of self preservation, which does not include you knowing the whole truth. Sad, but thatís reality. Iím so sorry that you are at this place Ė itís infuriating, and you are already in so much pain from what has been admitted already.
I wish I had a magic comment that you could say that would get him to open up and tell you the truth. I wish that WS would understand the madness that comes with knowing there is more, and yet being told repeatedly that there isnít. There is a big difference between your gut screaming that something is still wrong and the normal wondering if there is anything else. No one deserves to be dragged through the Ďprove ití hell that youíre being taken through.
To me, it makes things much worse, because we can become so focused on what weíre missing that we donít process what we know. This makes any healing take longer than necessary, and makes forgiveness much more difficult.
Youíre strong, SIH Ė thatís clear from your posts. This is difficult but youíve done right by your children and yourself. Your next move should be one that you believe is right for you Ė Marriage Counseling, Separation, Reconciliation Ė there are a lot of choices available to you right now, and I have faith you will do what is best for you, and for your children. Please, do not put your Hís needs near the top of the list right now. He is not making your needs a priority, and he is absolutely looking out for himself, so you need to do the same. You need to take care of you.
You have my support SIH, and the support of all here at SI. You will be ok on the other side of this nightmare your H has brought to you. I have no idea what the other side will look like for you, but I know you will absolutely be ok.
YOU will not fix him-HE will lie his ass off. You will need to kick him out of the house immediately and then you must have an addictions counselor for yourself and Al-anon (even though he is not an alcoholic they will be TREMENDOUSLY helpful to YOU).
I may seem hard in this post, but you are in a special situation dear. Please contact me if you wish. Also there is a special thread for spouses of sexual addicts.
you will have to have a NO TOLERANCE policy for yourselff from now on...and yes...I am in the same boat.
Schedule a poly test and tell him he is taking one and make sure your questions are about the phone..
Whatch him squirm they say they have parking lot confessions.. Why do they keep lying?
D-Day, June 10, 2012
As mentioned, there is no set time limit. I've seen recommendations for 6 months in a few books on the subject. The reason for that is that before then, most are in a shocked daze. The 6 months is enough time for your head to clear (so they say) and that allows you to make a fully thought out decision.
As mentioned, for some it's an immediate deal breaker. Others I've seen have taken several years and decided that it just wasn't working - they could not move forward enough to have a decent marriage or life. It is all up to the BS, or perhaps the WS.
Another reason I've seen for 6 months is this: If, in 6 months, you want to leave, you can. Leaving is always an option. If you leave immediately, and in 4 months decide that perhaps cheating wasn't a dealbreaker and you would like to try R, the WS may have moved on and decided that R is not what he/she wants. The options are there if you don't leave right away, but some options disappear over time, such as reconciling.
You'll know if you've had it. I wish I had a better answer. I spent years waffling between leaving and staying. It's really a bad place to be. Keeping one foot out the door doesn't allow a strong relationship to rebuild, and it left me in a constant state of anxiety. The A is surrounding too much at that point, and I decided that, for my own sanity, I had to decide and then go with the decision. I decided to stay, but I do know that leaving is always an option, but that doesn't mean I have to play tug-of-war in my own head daily over what to do.
The question is, can a WS change his or her spots?
That, clearly, depends on the WS. Spend some time in the WS forum (do so at your own risk), and you will see many WSs, men and women, in real pain in real turmoil over their actions. Some are deeply depresses and desperate to fix things. Some though, are still in denial. some of the posters blame their BS for everything, other hate themselves. It is not a question of sex addiction, it is a question of empathy and love - some are capable of it and others aren't.
I strongly urge that you buy yourself some time. Talk to your WS, tell him you don't know what you want - but that you need a cooling off period of at least a couple of months. During that time you will try to deal politely and even kindly with him - but that in return you need complete honesty and openness from him while you figure it out. He has to agree to tell you everything, to give you every password to every account (including cell phone accounts- esp the hidden one), to accept that the next 6 months or more will be tough and that he needs to support you emotionally through all the ups and downs.
The point of the 180 is to help you set boundaries and to help you act like you're in control even if you feel totally out of control. In part, it is also to remind your WS of the person they first fell in love with. But really, it is about reminding you who you are - not the bitter, angry, broken BS, but the strong, confident woman you were before this mess.
Set expectations - your and his - that if you two decide to stay together, the next year or two will be really tough.