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deena posted 4/5/2014 10:53 AM

My kids are older. The 2 older ones have moved out. The 2 at home are 22 year old son and a 17 year old daughter,

They dion't know what their father has done, but I suspect the son at home suspects. I don't think he likes some of the ways of his father and he has seen and questioned where he was on some very late nights out a few years ago, before d-day.

The problem is my 17 year old daughter.
We are in house separated, although my WH acts like everything is just fine.
My daughter makes comments and questions why I am not watching television with WH, etc. She acts mad that I am treating WH badly by ignoring him.
I can see her point with her not knowing the reason and I don't know how to explain my reason.

Last night WH sat on the couch and just called my name until I came to him. My daughter came to say "dad wants you" with a "can't you hear him attitude"
I went intending to watch the show with him because of my daughter.
It was a Tina Fey show (who I like), but within a minute Tina's line was "you had unprotected sex with someone else?"
I am sure it was a funny movie, but that turned me off right away and I walked out.

How do I deal with looking like I am not treating WH right in front of the kids? I talk nice to him. Just don't like "hanging" out with him.
I am also wondering how much of a loony bitch I will look like when I push the actual separation.
How do I handle this?

Gemini71 posted 4/5/2014 11:00 AM

Your daughter is old enough to know the truth.

There are many different ways to do this. I would opt for a calm, matter of fact discussion about the reasons for your D. Don't assign blame or go into details, just explain that infidelity is a deal-breaker for you. Encourage her to maintain her relationship with her dad and ask him any additional questions he may have. (Expect WH to be pissed that his secret is out.)

Then the next time DD comes to you saying, "Dad wants you," you can explain that it isn't your job anymore to answer his calls. STBX can come talk to you if he wants.

deena posted 4/5/2014 11:17 AM

I have not told any of the kids of WH's infidelity.

I don't want to tell them.

I don't want them to lose their father like I have lost my husband.

I don't want them to hurt as well.

Nature_Girl posted 4/5/2014 11:29 AM

We all have consequences of our choices & actions. Your consequence for not telling your daughter the truth will be to lose your relationship with her.

Merlin posted 4/5/2014 11:30 AM

You've, for now at least, made the choice deena.

There are consequences.

Chrysalis123 posted 4/5/2014 11:33 AM

If your kids eventually find out, they could be extremely upset you lied to them. I can see this unfolding in various ways..none of them good for you and the kids.

Deena, the truth is always the best. And your kids relationship with their dad is between them.

persevere posted 4/5/2014 11:34 AM

Not telling them truth doesn't change the truth, but it does put them in a position of drawing their own conclusions when things clearly aren't okay in their home, which isn't fair either.

Typically, it's easier to deal with the truth than a lie, even when the truth is hurtful, but the healing can't begin until you tell them what's going on.

And, no, this isn't fair, but your STBX made decisions that affect everyone.

nekorb posted 4/5/2014 11:36 AM


My kids are 15,17,19. We told them about the D/A almost a month ago.

WH didn't want to tell them about the A. I said there was no way in hell I wasn't telling them.

I'm so glad I did. When I explained to the kids that I was yelling them about the affair because I take my marriage vows seriously and there is only one acceptable reason to end a marriage my 19yo broke in and said,"I was getting ready to ask anyway.".

Now my kids know that I will GIVE them the truth. They don't have to ask for it. They know there will be no secrets in out family.

They are angry at us. Angrier at their father. But none have cut him off and I encourage all of them to remember their feelings will not always be this intense and making amends and repairing the relationship with their dad is important.

If I had to do it over I would tell them again.

deena posted 4/5/2014 12:04 PM

I am conflicted now.

What everyone here says makes sense.

At the beginning I felt that to not tell the kids was the better option. I didn't want them to feel the pain too.
Then it was confirmed by my IC and my dr. Whom both brought it up with out me initiating it.

[This message edited by deena at 12:07 PM, April 5th (Saturday)]

PurpleRose posted 4/5/2014 12:19 PM

This is why secrets and lies destroy families.

I didn't want my kids to know either. But once they were told, their relief was palpable. They KNEW something was bad, and one had decided that it had something to do with the kids. Once I told them the truth-- the REAL truth, not the doosh's ridiculous half truth version -- the kids were relieved.

And now they all know I will not lie to them. They can come to me and I will tell them the real deal if appropriate. If not, they at least get a kid-version of reality.

Tell your kids. They deserve to know what is happening in their lives.

one2ndchance posted 4/5/2014 12:39 PM

I don't want them to lose their father like I have lost my husband.

Your children will not lose their father. My daughter was told the truth. She loves her father, but realizes and accepts that he is flawed.

While I admire your desire to protect your children from hurt, we as mothers, know that it's the challenges and difficulties in life that teach and help them grow into strong adults

tennis26 posted 4/5/2014 12:58 PM

..deena.. My kids also don't know my real reason for divorcing and they really haven't asked. Like you I've felt that I want to spare them pain as the divorce is hard enough on them. Mine are 4, 6, 10, and 15.

I am going to ask my daughter (the oldest) if she wants to talk about anything or ask me any questions. She is in denial and doesn't like to think about or talk about the divorce. So I'm dealing with that aspect too.
I'm struggling with how to be honest and gentle when I tell her about the affair.

I am pretty sure the OW will be in their lives at some point and they have a right to know the truth which they won't get from their dad.

It must be so hard to be in house S and have your daughter witness you hiding your pain. I think everything will make more sense to her once she knows the truth. It is also a teaching opportunity. To show your daughter you are not a doormat and she should never be one either. Betrayal is the most painful thing to experience in a marriage and you can show her that you're standing up for yourself and your values.

Let me know what you decide to do and how it goes if you tell her. I'm preparing to tell my daughter...I just want to do it the right way.

deena posted 4/5/2014 13:09 PM

doing it the right way
scares me. There isn't a handbook on this. And every child and situation is different.

I don't know what to do now....this is going to need some thought.

Mine are old enough, it will just put a wrench in their lives for awhile.

They are 28DD(newly married), 26DD, 22DS and 17DD.

devistatedmom posted 4/5/2014 13:50 PM

Deena, I read your original post to mean that you haven't told your daughter that you are getting D at all. THAT is a bigger issue than whether to tell her about the A or not...

She can't understand why you don't come sit with dad. She's getting mad at YOU. Dad keeps talking to you like normal, you are ignoring him. She's getting mad at YOU.

You need to tell her SOMETHING. You can't 180 him with her there without her even knowing the two of you are splitting up.

I can get when people want to keep everything status quo until school is done or whatever so they can get the kids through exams, but that requires them not noticing anything changing. She's noticed. At the moment, you are at fault in her eyes. If you don't tell her anything, then one day he just moves out, she's going to blame YOU.

She needs to be told something so she understands why you don't want to watch tv with him like you always have in the past.

Sad in AZ posted 4/5/2014 13:54 PM

I tried to hide the truth from DS (he was 20 at d-day and lived at home.) He was frantic to find out what was wrong and finally went to a beloved aunt (X's sister). She called and chastised me for not telling him (she knew all about it.) When I sat DS down for the talk, the X had already planted the seeds of gaslighting (told him they were 'just friends' etc.) I had the 'pleasure' of telling DS about his father's $1000+ viagra expenses. That was fun.

Don't keep them in the dark. Is it better you lose respect?

deena posted 4/5/2014 14:38 PM

I have not told any of the kids there is a separation coming. I wanted to wait until closer to the time of separation.
And yes waiting until after exams are over is big on my thoughts.

My WH does not believe in talking and also acts like if he ignores it and acts normal I will change my mind. Even tho I have said we will be like mother and father, not husband and wife, until the time is right for the separation.

I don't want to lose any respect my kids have of me. But I so don't want them hurt.
It was like a knife every time infidelity would pop up in conversation over these years. How they would react so negatively to it. I know they would not have respect for their father if they knew.

Merlin posted 4/5/2014 14:42 PM

Your choice deena.

Your consequences.

k94ever posted 4/5/2014 14:46 PM

Adult constantly underestimate the observational powers of children.

Deena, they already know. Especially if the 22 year old knows or suspects.

Telling them will help them start moving through this.


[This message edited by k94ever at 2:46 PM, April 5th (Saturday)]

Nature_Girl posted 4/5/2014 14:55 PM

THAT is a bigger issue than whether to tell her about the A or not...

I respectfully but wholeheartedly disagree with this. Both of these points are critical. It is critical that the kids know the parents are divorcing. The daughter only sees her mother being a complete bitch to her father. She has no idea why her mother is acting in such a terrible way. I'm willing to bet that the daughter at this point feels it is her responsibility to make Deena see that she, Deena, is destroying the marriage. I bet the DD thinks that Deena has gone completely mad and is driving her father away. The DD is desperate to hold her family together, so she's telling herself all kinds of nonsense and destroying her own mind & soul hoping she can fix what's wrong. When Deena & her husband split up, the DD is going to blame herself.

It is critical for the DD to know the decision to divorce has already been made. She also needs to know why. Right now, if the divorce is mentioned, the DD is going to think it's because Deena has become a cruel, unloving bitch. The DD needs to know why Deena is acting this way. The DD needs to see a positive role model in her mother. Without all the information, this is not possible for the DD.

NeverAgain2013 posted 4/5/2014 15:37 PM

I don't understand why she has to be told about the affair.

That's really intensely private marital information that shouldn't be visited on a 17 year old teenage girl.

Why can't she just be told that you both can no longer stay married successfully and have agreed that you're going to separate?

Her father is a scoundrel, no two ways about it. I have exactly ZERO sympathy for him. HOWEVER, the immediate damage it will do to the relationship between she and her father will be catastrophic and it will make your home a living hell overnight.

I just don't understand why she has to be told about the affair along with the separation.

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