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Husband had a two-night stand with co-worker

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jessb115258 posted 11/11/2013 21:58 PM

This is a long story; I apologize for rambling…I can barely get through a day without swinging between extremes of wanting to divorce him and then thinking about putting it behind us like it never happened. I also think ignorance would be bliss…would be better off not knowing, he should have to spend the rest of his life living with the guilt.

My husband is an auditor and travels frequently; he’s usually gone for at least a week or two each month. He went to South Carolina for an assignment three weeks ago and I thought it was a normal trip like any other; he did tell me he was going with his co-worker, Emily, who I’ve met before and didn’t think anything of them traveling alone together. I hadn’t the slightest idea she was interested in my husband since she’s 16 years younger than him and has a serious boyfriend.

This past Saturday, I ran into his manager’s wife at the mall. We made small talk and out of the blue she said she had to hand it to me…she’s not as secure as me, she would never let her husband share a room with a younger, female co-worker. I was baffled, had no idea what she was talking about and just laughed it off that we had a very strong marriage. I spent the rest of my mall trip thinking about it and when I got home, I took the kids to the neighbors’ house to play so I could question him. I told him what his manager’s wife said and his face dropped. He came clean that his company was severely cutting back on expenses and asked him and Emily if they would be OK with sharing a room for the audit engagement; he didn’t tell me because he didn’t want to make a big deal about it. I believed him and left it alone, but I had a nagging feeling about it. I questioned him again after I put the kids to bed, telling him I didn’t feel right about it.

He broke down with his face in his hands; said he was very sorry, it meant nothing and he told Emily it couldn’t happen again and it was a mistake, and he would do whatever it takes to make it up to me. I was stunned, felt like I had the wind knocked out of me, and couldn’t believe what he was telling me. He was blubbering and I told him to slow down and start from the beginning and I wanted the entire truth and details.

He said the part about the company making them share a room was true and his manager and HR made a big deal about making sure it was OK with him and Emily. He didn’t want to tell me because he knew how I would react and there was no way around it because he had to go. They went about work normally, had dinner with the clients and went back to the hotel. I believe him when he says he didn’t have any sexual thoughts in mind and he didn’t think she did either; he says she hadn’t flirted with him at all. He said they both went about their night routines, got into the separate beds, the lights went out and they made small talk until it got quiet.

At this point, I thought he was going to have a seizure; he could barely find the words through his crying. He said he was half asleep on his side facing away from her, but could hear her moving around in her bed. He said all of a sudden she got into bed with him and when he turned around to face her, she kissed him and pressed up against him and he knew she was naked. He said he stopped thinking, got caught up in the moment, his clothes came off and they had sex in the dark. He said they did it again before falling asleep. He said he woke in the morning and she was back in her bed. He went into the shower to get ready for work and to clear his head (genius that he is, he didn’t lock the bathroom door). She joined him in the shower and they had sex again. They got dressed and left for the client’s office without talking. He said the day went by without any awkwardness from her as if nothing had happened. Through his crying, he said they had sex three times that night and again in the shower the next morning before leaving for the airport. He said reality set in on the flight back; he was wracked with guilt and disgust of himself. When they landed, he told her it was a mistake and it would never happen again. She said she understood and it would be their secret. I was in shock, just couldn’t process it. I couldn’t look at him and told him that I would sleep in the guestroom that night.

I really owe it to his manager’s wife, I never would’ve found out otherwise. He came home and didn’t seem different at all. I believe he’s told me the complete truth and I can see that he’s genuinely remorseful and scared of losing the kids and me. I just wish I could get inside his head to understand how he could have sex with this woman seven times. He’s tried to explain it as being in another city, in a strange hotel arrangement and having someone so much younger aggressively come onto him.

I just don’t know if I can get past it. How can he come home and act perfectly normal? I’ve asked him if he enjoyed the sex and he refuses to answer, says he doesn’t want to add more hurt, but I want to know. They didn't use protection so he's going to get tested; thankfully he had a vasectomy. He says they don’t talk at work unless it’s work related and that no one has a clue what happened. He says he’ll find an excuse not to travel with her again.

I just don’t know what to do. My mind is screaming divorce most of the time, but I also think about the life we’ve built together and our kids…how can I just throw it away without trying to fix it for them and then I think how he easily threw it away for cheap sex.

I’m just a mess.

storm77 posted 11/11/2013 22:34 PM

I am so sorry you are here. Take your time and decide what you want to do. Nothing says you have to divorce him if you don't want to. If you want more details he should be open, honest and answer every question you have. He can only cause you more pain by not doing this. I needed every single detail and let H know that I may ask the same question over and over.(Which I did and am still doing) Please be sure to take care of yourself during this time. Read the healing library and look into IC. If you want to R be sure to get him to go to MC. Ask for his password to the phone, facebook, email etc to be sure this only happened this one time. Again I am sorry you are here. I am sending you lots of hugs.

Skan posted 11/11/2013 23:25 PM

Jessb, keep digging. I've traveled a lot for work. So has my FWH. NO company, no matter what the monetary situation, asks two people of opposite sex to room together because of liability reasons. Not one. Two men or two women, yes. A unrelated man and woman? No.

momentintime posted 11/12/2013 00:33 AM

I am so sorry you find yourself on this site. That was a lot to take in. A few thoughts.

Something similar happened to my WS. I told my WS that no married man has another woman in his hotel room unless it is his wife. End of story. I can't imagine any company asking a married man to share a room with a female co-worker. One of them must have suggested it. There is more to this story than you know IMHO. After the first time, why did he continue? Why didn't he address the issue instead of just acting like nothing happen until the second evening. He choose to continue. He needs to own that. She didn't make him, she just provide the temptation. Plus he knew they would be sharing a room. He deliberately kept that info from you. He came home and didn't tell you what happened. Only upon questioning did he fessed....and only after you weren't satisfied with his first attempt to snow you. There is much more to this. Most people would be very uncomfortable sharing a hotel room with a person of the opposite sex unless they were VERY at ease with the co-worker. What isn't he telling you about their relationship? Why did he hide it from you?

Your WS needs to set some serious boundaries.

You need time to absorb all of this. You have come to the right place for support.

chick posted 11/12/2013 00:43 AM

I am so sorry to hear your story, it does sound very bizarre that he would be forced to share a room with a female colleague but to get peace of mind on that particular point I would demand a meeting with someone from his HR Team to clarify. If you not want his work to know about what happened then you don't need to tell them about it, he can just say that you are unhappy about the decision and would like to discuss with them.

I’ve asked him if he enjoyed the sex and he refuses to answer, says he doesn’t want to add more hurt, but I want to know.

You have a right to know exactly what you want to know and I completely get that he thinks he should not cause you more hurt but if you want to know then it will be worse for you to not have the full details. Your imagination will fill in the blanks for you and it could be even worse than the reality. If he is truly sorry he should do whatever you ask and will tell you every horrible little detail if you want to know it. You may have some questions right now and things may keep popping into your head over the next few weeks, months, years - he should be patient and willing to answer them.

Lovedyoumore posted 11/12/2013 00:46 AM

My H has worked for huge national companies and small regional companies. No company is going to ask a male and female to share a hotel room. HR would have liability out the wazoo. Even if it is true they asked, he could have turned it down. The manager's wife as much as told you so when she said she would oppose her husband sharing a room. Still, I cannot believe any company would set up a sexual harassment scenario by actually coercing the sharing of rooms. God help us if this is the new normal.

ButterflyGirl posted 11/12/2013 02:03 AM

He says they don’t talk at work unless it’s work related and that no one has a clue what happened. He says he’ll find an excuse not to travel with her again.

Personally, I think this is bull. I also think it would be unacceptable for me. Time for him to get a new job. He has most likely talked to this woman and knows so much more about her than he is telling you.

I'm no psychic, but I would also guess he complained about your marriage, and that is why she felt comfortable enough to cross boundaries. That is, if her crawling in his bed with him facing the other way is even the truth..

He said it himself, he's trying to tell you some truth without hurting you too much, but this means he isn't telling you the full truth..

I'm sorry, but I think he enjoyed the sex. He's kind of telling you that without really having to say it. I guess it's better than lying about and saying it was awful, which I think a lot of waywards say to soften the blow..

I'm sorry you had to find us, but you will find a lot of support here. I hope he keeps his remorseful attitude and really wants to figure out how he allowed this to happen. You cannot just forget about this and sweep it under the rug or it will happen again. He needs to do some digging and really work on his whys..

Good luck..

Afraid2LoveAgain posted 11/12/2013 03:41 AM

I am an IT professional who has traveled on business for many, many years. I have dealt with companies of all sizes and resources and have never heard of any company asking opposite gender employees to share a room.

No company would risk the liability of this. His story is complete bullshit. I would divorce him for being such an idiot that he thinks you believe this.

Obviously they shared a room and the manager's wife knew it and was finding a diplomatic way to let you know.

[This message edited by Afraid2LoveAgain at 3:43 AM, November 12th (Tuesday)]

naivegirl posted 11/12/2013 05:32 AM

I would tell him you are going to ask his boss about having to share a room. If he is lying I bet he will come clean. Also he sure makes it seem like she did all the initiating. Sounds fishy.

painfulpast posted 11/12/2013 05:49 AM

I'm sorry you're here. Unfortunately, I'm with the others. I work in finance, and I used to be an auditor. The client reimburses ALL travel costs, so his company wouldn't care at all if they had their own rooms as the client would be the one footing the bill. His story makes ZERO sense.

I'm sorry - but there is more to this than he's letting on.

Swims posted 11/12/2013 06:06 AM

I'm agreeing with the other posters about the company requiring them to share a room to cut expenses. Bunch of bull! And I certainly don't buy the part about her climbing into bed with him and he "just stopped thinking". There is a lot more to this story. You are at the tip of the iceberg right now. He's just sorry that the managers wife outed him. Do you have an ally in his office that could answer questions?? Hugs to you, I'm so sorry you find yourself here. Take care of yourself!

solus sto posted 11/12/2013 07:29 AM

There's more to the story. Gently, he has only told you what he HAD to tell you, because he was exposed.

There is not a company on the planet that would ask a married man to share a room with a female colleague. The liability alone is astronomical.

It's bad enough he is having/had an affair. That he expects you to buy something so ludicrous is insulting.

Keep digging. (You might start with the HR department and their written travel policies.)

You said you asked him whether he enjoyed the sex and he didn't answer because he didn't want to "add more hurt." Now is the time to properly school him: he needs to answer EVERY question fully and honestly, without censorship, and let YOU decide what you can and cannot tolerate.

He may say he's protecting you from hurt, but he's really protecting himself and OW.

What is his plan, vis-a-vis work? Will he be looking for a new job? Asking for a transfer to another city or department? How will he achieve and maintain NC with OW?

I ask these things because, really, you didn't say he was committed to R, or even planned to end the affair. Being wracked with guilt doesn't cut it; he came home, pretended nothing was different, would have continued lying to you every day of your life. While it's attractive, at this point, thinking of still being in the dark rather than knowing this horrendous truth about the man you trusted, it's the worst possible scenario. Even if the affair had stopped,the lies would have created a barrier to emotional intimacy, forever changing your marriage. Trust me on this--I was in the dark for a very long time, and the change was palpable and awful.

Your husband is lying to you. In your shoes, I would (a) ascertain whether he intended to remain in the marriage (you don't have to make this decision yet, but he DOES--he has to be all in or all out, (b) do a HARD 180 until he is firmly NC with OW, and (c) get tested for STDs, require that your husband do so as well, and use a condom (when you're READY to have sex) until all recommended follow-up is completed. (Doctors have different recommendations. Mine retests at six-month intervals for 18-24 months. He then rechecks for HIV annually.)

I'm really sorry you have reason to be here, but glad you found SI. It helps--a lot.

Lalagirl posted 11/12/2013 07:32 AM

I would tell him you are going to ask his boss about having to share a room. If he is lying I bet he will come clean. Also he sure makes it seem like she did all the initiating. Sounds fishy.

I echo this sentiment.

Gently...he is lying through his teeth.

What really pisses me off is his so called "remorse" - if he were truly remorseful, he would not have had sex seven times with her AND he would have requested another room and paid for it himself.

In addition to the above suggestion, I'd demand a polygraph...and go from there...

Keep posting...we're here to help you through this awful mess.



Bigger posted 11/12/2013 07:43 AM

I was just about to post nearly verbatim what Afraid2LoveAgain posted.

Want to add though that in the vast majority of cases travel and travel expense is compensated by the customer, especially in services such as IT, accounting and auditing. Plus as a business cost this is accounting and auditing heaven tax-wise.

If his auditing company has sunk to the level of saving nickels by making these demands AND if he has had an affair with a co-worker then it’s time he looks for a new employer.

betrayedme2 posted 11/12/2013 08:07 AM

Jess, so sorry this has happened. Truly so. I too travel a LOT, or "used to" travel a lot before my dday. Never, ever would a company pair a male and female together. But, if the manager's wife knew? Perhaps there is a thread of truth in there. Others may call me naive. It's just hard to fathom. I'm fortunate enough to work for a company that allows everyone a room by themselves regardless. If it's a small private firm, I'm be more able to give consideration. If they have an actual HR dept instead of a person who has HR duties, sorry, it just doesn't smell right.

Don't make any rash decisions. Be careful who you talk to about this. Seek counseling for both yourself and when up to it, or if you're up to it for marriage counseling. Suggest he go in for individual counseling also. Many larger companies have what's called an employee assistance program (EAP) that you can call in to anonymously to obtain free access to a certain number of sessions with a local counselor. It's a good source to be able to talk opening and honestly with someone that won't judge any decisions you make or pity your circumstance.

About him, sorry, but seven times...he enjoyed it, obviously. It hurts, but remember, its NOT about your. Keep telling yourself that. IT'S NOT ABOUT YOU. IT'S NOT ABOUT YOU. It's about whatever issue that HE HAS that allowed himself to be put in a situation like that and for not saying "NO".

All the above said, don't be surprised if more truth trickles out..... You'll read that trickle truth hurts so much as the pain just keeps coming. Most of us would rather just take it all at one time, than to keep getting threads of it. With trickle truth you (we) never really know if we got all of it. At least if you're getting all of it at one time and there's no further trickles, you know what you're dealing with. Some common things you'll find, text msgs, possibly sexting, emails, hidden/unknown email accounts, unaccounted for time, long lunches, increase/decrease in sexual desire. I certainly hope it was a one time thing. Has he traveled with her before?

Again, it's not about you. Don't blame yourself. Don't think "if I had done this or done that". If you decide to reconcile, set groundrules. YOUR ground rules, anything and everything you want and it only lessens when YOU want it to. It's not punishment for him, it's peace of mind for you.

Best wishes for you and your family!!

marionwendy posted 11/12/2013 08:48 AM

UNBELIEVABLE!!! Sounds fishy to me? Had to share a room I call bullshit! I do this for a living I book all the hotel rooms for our co workers NEVER do we book a man and a woman together EVER! IMOP I think he is lying.... wont answer you about enjoying sex because he did! Otherwise he wouldn't of done it 6 more times! They say they don't want to hurt us, really its about them and not wanting our reaction!!!!! Lies! Do more digging you ask a man enough questions eventually the truth comes out they slip up they forget what they have said! Threaten him tell him your calling his boss. if he doesn't come clean, DO call!

LivingALie posted 11/12/2013 08:51 AM

I know this is going to come out sounding sarcastic – I really don’t mean for it to be – I just have to say that I’ve been on these boards a few years and thought I had seen it all. But this one? Oh please…there is absolutely NO WAY any organization would require that a male and female share a room.

And let’s give him the benefit of the doubt here and say he’s telling the truth – he could have gotten his own room and paid for it out of his own pocket.

And he wasn’t smart enough to lock the bathroom door? You are giving him too much credibility. Seriously?

But – I think you know all this deep inside and its just so hard to come to terms with it. I know. Immediately following my DDay I did question my husband a few times and he gave me some crazy answers that I wanted to believe. For instance, he told me that they would get together after his car. But nothing ever happened. No touching, no kissing. Nothing.

At first, I believed him. But then I thought about it – a married man – a married woman – both adults – alone in a car – and nothing happened? If I had told my husband that story about ME – he’d say “I’m a guy, I know what guys want…and it’s not just talk”. So I reminded him of that – and guess what? Plenty happened –and it wasn’t talking.

Your H’s tears and near-seizure aren’t about what happened – they’re about his being caught by you and he’s terrified.

Shaking my head….the company made them share a room? Wow. I think I really have heard everything.

annb posted 11/12/2013 08:55 AM

Sorry, jess, I have to agree with the others.
There is so much more that your husband is not telling you.

This other woman has a steady boyfriend? He has a right to know that his gf is cheating with a married man. Best way to end this is to expose the affair.

He says they don’t talk at work unless it’s work related and that no one has a clue what happened. He says he’ll find an excuse not to travel with her again

^^Yes, his co-workers know exactly what is going on. The manager's wife knew, which means there are a whole lot more who know.

Please be kind to yourself. You have just stepped onto the emotional roller coaster of your life.


Sammy2013 posted 11/12/2013 09:21 AM

I am so sorry you are here. I know that feeling of first finding out. I agree with others. There are things he's not telling you. A company will not ask members if the opposite sex to share a hotel room. A woman does not just lay down naked with a man who hasn't given her any reason to think he wants her to. There is an entire story you aren't getting. Trickle truth is something that happens in almost every situation. As for him believing that no one knows, he's in a fog. The fact that his supervisors wife said something to you says that people are talking.

Stay strong, get yourself into counseling. Keep posting and reading here. This site was a lifesaver for me and I am not even a month out. Remind yourself every day that this isn't your fault. Huge (((((hugs))))).

painfulpast posted 11/12/2013 10:15 AM

But, if the manager's wife knew? Perhaps there is a thread of truth in there.

I think that
WH and OW were too dumb to rent two rooms so that it wouldn't look so bad, and then when they got back realized they didn't have the receipts so they said it was to save money.

I think the manager’s wife knew because it was so damned ‘unusual’ that the manager mentioned it. I think the manager’s wife was testing to see if you knew. If the company was doing this to everyone, she wouldn’t single you out.

This story really bothers me for some reason.

As I said, I used to be an auditor. If you want, I can call their HR department and act like I’m interested in a job and ask a few questions, one being about travel and sleeping arrangements (will I get my own room?).

If you want me to, just PM me the firm’s name and phone #.

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