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ruby44 posted 11/3/2013 10:29 AM

How do I handle this. WH has been showing up on Sundays to go to mass with us. Not at the house but at church. The girls are happy to see him and we pretend like we are a family for an hour. He came back to the house to do some maintenance, his request, and proceeds to tell how I look at him with contempt all the time and that he is afraid I will ruin him! I am shocked at the image he tries to portray to our church and friends and he is so afraid that I will ruin him, while he has ruined our family. What do I do. Tell him to stay away, let him continue to go hoping for divine intervention. I am at a loss because I never want to keep anyone from God's house.

SoVerySadNow posted 11/3/2013 10:35 AM

Is there a different mass you can attend? I don't know the size of your church, so maybe there is only one.
Have you told him to sit elsewhere?
Are there friends that you can surround yourself with so that he's not right next to you and the girls?

None of these things prevent him from a relationship with the church. It's not up to you to keep up a farce- he's the one who strayed and destroyed his own reputation. Don't rugsweep for him.

BrighterFuture posted 11/3/2013 11:33 AM

It's upto you to do things when you're ready, but I would let priest know what's going on.

sisoon posted 11/3/2013 11:58 AM

Hmmm...IMO he ruined himself.

Is he remorseful (secular meaning here) and repentant (religious)? Since he's apparently so concerned with image, compared to reality, I assume he's not.

Have you outed him to your priest in confidence?

Can you say, 'I'll stop looking at you with contempt when you do something to earn a different look'?

Gemini71 posted 11/3/2013 12:04 PM

Ditto what everyone else said Ruby. I find it amazing that STBXH can show his face in God's House after what he has done.

Definitely ask him to sit elsewhere, so the lightning doesn't singe you and DDs when it strikes!

This is a perfect opportunity to confide in your priest and ask for his guidance in how to handle this situation. If WH gets outed in the process, too bad. If WH's a believer, he should have already confessed his adultery to his priest.

Holly-Isis posted 11/3/2013 13:19 PM

Sometimes loving someone means doing the hard things to keep them from sinning. He's lying through his actions and making your family complicit in the lie.

He's still showing he's concerned about himself. Not about you, not even the kids.

If he wants to go to church, I'm sure there are many others he can choose from.

What I'm more concerned about is that it seems nobody in your church knows. It should be a support system for you. I'm so sorry that it seems that you're all alone in this, even to the point of having to put on a happy face in the one place you should be able to find comfort and support.

Nature_Girl posted 11/3/2013 16:54 PM

I bet where you live there are hundreds or thousands of churches he can choose to attend. So tell him to take his pick.

My church is my safe place. I need to be safe there. I cannot be safe with him there. I need the people I have built a community with there to support me. Further, I will not live a lie, nor will I allow myself to be used to perpetuate a lie. And finally, I would not permit my children to be emotionally confused every single Sunday.

kansas1968 posted 11/3/2013 17:02 PM

He is trying to manipulate you into playing a part in his fantasy image of himself that he is trying to create. He wants everyone to think he is the good guy. Helping you at home, going to church. He should have thought about church when he was cheating. They always want it all.
They want you, them, AND everyone to think they are wonderful and moral.
Tell him to get lost. Find another church. You don't want to see him. He is the one who ruined himself by being a liar and a cheater.

Crushed18 posted 11/3/2013 17:24 PM

He is trying to manipulate you. Please don't buy into it. IF he was SO concerned about his image/reputation he wouldn't have cheated.

If you enjoy the mass you currently attend and don't want to go elsewhere, tell him to pick another mass OR you will let everyone know who he really is and what he's done.

Sorry you can't even escape this hurtful madness to attend mass. Geez!

storm77 posted 11/3/2013 20:39 PM

Tell your priest. In our faith we have testimony service in which you can stand up and basically get anything good or bad off your chest to give other encouragement and to find support for issues we may be going through. H certainly sweated when I got up to speak. I simply said that I was going through the worst time in my life and that someone had hurt me in the worst way. I asked for support and for everyone to pray for our family. My H was furious!!! Can you do something similar?? He may choose to go elsewhere after that.
Our pastor is our MC so H was outed to him before my little speech. He was also not happy that this was my choice in a MC. We have sat through many sermons on how to treat your wife...and other lovely gems that have made him squirm or feel uncomfortable. At one point he thought another pastor was talking directly to him during a sermon and people were giving him funny looks. Our pastor told him it was his own guilt talking and that no one knew what was going on. lol

2oldforthis posted 11/4/2013 08:18 AM

I think differently about this then most of the post so far. I feel it is ok for him to go to the same mass and sit by you and the family. I don't think everyone in the church needs to know your situation.

I don't know your story and don't know how regretful your WS is but if he has not been I do believe that this is the one place that maybe something at some time will get to him. Go to church is a good thing. Something he needs to do. It is were he needs to be. Faith is a postive. Family is a postive. Maybe it will sink in.

Church has been the one thing that has helped my WS to see what he has done and to do better.

maddmurph posted 11/4/2013 12:04 PM

We go to church together (and still live together) but I have another church picked out in my back pocket should it go south. I would recommend you do the same thing. Shake him up a bit by not being there.

DefeatedDad posted 11/4/2013 12:31 PM

My fWW and I attend an evangelical Christian church.

I had stopped going after DDay, and for a couple months I did not attend church with WW as we were living apart. About three weeks after DdAy, and without my prompting, my wife went to her pastor and told him about her affair. She then went before the church during a monthly business meeting and confessed to everyone... all 100 or so church members.

Well, the support for her was overwhelming and I started getting calls from church members asking me to come back. After she moved back home I started going with her again.

What is amazing is that after that happened, two more people, one guy and one lady, came forward to confess they had cheated on their spouses.

Ruby44 I think you should go to your priest and tell him the issue, so that he is aware of what is going on.

HurtButHopeful? posted 11/4/2013 12:59 PM

ruby44,
Like others have asked, I have the same Q. Have you told your priest about H's behavior?

Here's another true story: Several years before my H's EA, we attended a church where the pastor made a public announcement about a man who attended our church, and wasn't there that day (His BW was there.) The pastor told us, the man was having an A. The man's BW had told the pastor what was happening. The pastor had a meeting with the WH and told him to stop the A, and come back to his BW. The man refused, so the pastor asked him to stop coming to church, outed him to the congregation and asked people in the congregation to not fellowship with him unless he repented. That left the man to his own devices, and made the church a safe and supportive place for his BW.

I respected that pastor greatly. He tried to persuade the man to stop his sin, but when the man refused, the pastor was strong enough to do a 180, and instruct the entire congregation to do it too (he didn't use those terms, I learned them here on SI.)

I disagree that a person can stop another from sinning. Even if you could tie them up so they don't physically sin, you can't control their mind or heart and stop them from having sinful thoughts and desires.

One can set up some boundaries, so another's refusal to stop sinning won't overflow into certain areas of your own life.

If your priest doesn't have the guts or authority to ask your WH to stop attending his church, you can ask the priest to tell your WH to not sit with your family, so you can worship without distraction.

Have you asked your friends at church to pray for you and your H? How is it that those people don't know about the A? They should be the ones who offer you the most support. They can't help you if you don't tell them your needs.

edited: glaringly bad typos again.

[This message edited by HurtButHopeful? at 1:01 PM, November 4th (Monday)]

strongerdaybyday posted 11/4/2013 13:45 PM

None of these things prevent him from a relationship with the church. It's not up to you to keep up a farce- he's the one who strayed and destroyed his own reputation. Don't rugsweep for him.

This exactly. He ruined his rep and his family by cheating. Is he showing up to mass because of his relationship with God or because he's trying save face? Either way...you don't owe him a thing. Sit elsewhere or with friends if possible. OR, attend a different church. Whatever's best for you ((HUGS))

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