I’m on my first business trip since dday. It’s emotional as my LTA took place on business trips.
In preparation for the trip I arranged to have a chaperone with me. A friend of 20 years happens to work with me and was able to travel with me in case it was needed or required by my BS. Right down to sharing a hotel room, I was ready to ensure this trip could be 100% trustworthy.
In the end, it didn’t matter. My wife never broke NC and never mentioned the trip to me after I sent her my airline and hotel details (one more not-so-subtle sign that the days of my marriage may be numbered).
Regardless, it turned out to be a supportive week with an old friend. He doesn’t live anywhere near me so this was a full week for us to discuss everything about my A, the current situation with the family, my wife, work, everything.
Shortly after dday my wife informed him about my affair. She shared a lot of details with him and he told me he was physically sick for almost a week trying to digest what I had done. But he told me something I didn’t know. After she initially told him, my wife reached out a second time and told him “for his own safety he should never contact me again.”
This was a pretty big moment for him personally and he thought about the request for a long time. He told me, and this floored me, that him and his wife decided that he HAD TO CONTACT ME. Their logic was simple; my family was in trauma, my wife was in trauma, obviously I was also in trauma and I needed a friend to talk to. I needed a friend and he was there for me shortly after dday and he’s been there ever since, even playing chaperone this week on a business trip.
He told me if it was a drug problem, if it was gambling, if I was involved in some other illegal activity or if I had a health problem, you name it, he would be there for me. He was my friend. The fact that the problem was an A made no difference in his care for my well-being and that of my family. This is what true friendship is.
And then he got me thinking about my wife. Like any couple, we’ve had our ups and downs in life and every step of the way, whether it was work stress, or health issue, a legal problem, whatever it was, my wife has always been my closest friend, my biggest supporter and when the going got tough, she was always a devoted partner supporting me. And if this time it was gambling and I lost the house, or a drug problem and I got arrested, etc. she would have been there 100% supporting me once again.
But it’s not. My problem is an A and I realize just one more way how I have hurt my wife. Through my friend’s gesture I realize how torn my wife must be on the inside. She cares about me deeply (or did at one time) and yet, she is also the victim of my A. So while she wants me to get help, for me, for the kids, maybe even for her, she also wants to throw me off a building repeatedly. I cannot imagine how this battle must feel as it wages inside her head, but knowing how emotional she is, it must be horrible. Some kind of a “save him / hate him” war must play itself out in her daily thoughts…
So there you have it. The power of true friendship and the realization, once again, as to how painful that same level of care must be hurting my wife.