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Strike 3?

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Bowledover posted 7/13/2014 07:22 AM

Ok, my W and I have been married for over 10 years. Our first situation was about 8 years ago when she had an EA with my best friend (she said it was never physical, so I'm taking her word on this one). Then, about three years ago she had a short A with a mutual friend while I was out of town on business. Upon returning, I saw a search on the computer for the morning after pill and and later discovered hotel stay on credit card. I discovered both of these and both times it stated with denial, then finger pointing at me for not being trusting. Finally, last month on a cruise with her family she had another A with someone she met on the cruise. I again discovered this upon her return and it started with lots of lies and denials until I uncovered enough truth that she admitted it. I love her and we have children that I do not want to do this to, but I also do not feel she is remorseful (except after she is caught) and with all the lies over the years I don't know how I will ever be able to trust her again. Thoughts?

betrayednewmommy posted 7/13/2014 07:31 AM

Welcome Bowledover! Replies can be slow on the weekend. Read the Healing Library. More people will come with more advice. This is wonderful community of people brought together for such a terrible reason.

Gemini71 posted 7/13/2014 08:10 AM

You don't need to make a decision until YOU feel ready to make a decision.

First, see your doctor for STD testing and insist your wife be tested too. She has put your health at risk in addition to your marriage and family.

My second thought is to see a lawyer for a consultation. Find out your rights in your state.

Then you can think about what your requirements for R should be. Gather as much information as you can. Read the Healing Library.

So sorry you find yourself here.

happyman64 posted 7/13/2014 08:14 AM


No. You will never be able to trust her again.

Has your wife ever discussed why she cheats & lies?

She obviously has a flaw in her character. Has she ever worked with a IC?

What do you really want for your future?

And does that future include your wife as your wife?


OK now posted 7/13/2014 08:30 AM

Obviously you have no more trust for your WW; she likes the exciting sex and validation on one hand, and her stable secure marriage on the other. What consequences are you prepared to apply?
1] You can admit defeat and accept her occasional adultery. Maybe she will abandon her infidelity when she is in her 50's or later. Old age will be the solution.
2] You can declare an open marriage and have affairs yourself.
3] You can simply divorce, co-parent and look for a faithful woman to marry. Plenty out there.
4] You can withdraw sex, all affection, romance, do whatever you want in the marriage, build your own separate friendships; just maintain a civil pleasant atmosphere and see what happens. Maybe your wife will find this intolerable and abandon her adultery. Well, most of it anyway.

You see you have choices, but do you have the will to apply one of the above and see it through to its conclusion?

norabird posted 7/13/2014 09:15 AM

I agree with happyman about IC--has she gotten it? What is broken within her that she looks for external validation and doesn't seem to even realize or care that it's a betrayal? Why does she minimize and justify this to herself? Does she even take her behavior seriously?

There are no boundaries or consequences in your M right now if things stay as they are. That has to change or this is just going to keep happening.

How likely is it that this has happened more than three times and that these are simply the only ones you know about, also? Maybe she has been getting away with other instances.

Your WW is not a safe partner right now. Is she willing to work to become one and can she even acknowledge the damage she has done?

[This message edited by norabird at 9:15 AM, July 13th (Sunday)]

jb3199 posted 7/13/2014 09:31 AM

Things will never change until you demand change...particularly from yourself.

There is one thing that you will learn very soon here---you can not change your wife. You can set boundaries, and help guide her to make correct choices, but ultimately, it is entirely up to her to address her issues.

But you can control yourself. You can decide what is and is not acceptable in your marriage. You have options...although they might not all be what you want...but they are options nonetheless. And the first option I would work on is NOT accepting your wife's behavior anymore.

Demand that she agree to counseling. Demand transparency and honesty. These are demands that you have a great amount of control over. Whether she complies....that is a different story. But you don't have to roll over and take it.

Like it was mentioned before, read in The Healing Library. Consult with an attorney. Learn your rights, and gain as much knowledge as possible. Separate your finances, so you are not unknowingly bankrolling poor behavior. These are all steps in gaining back control of your life.

You are going to have to come to the realization that losing your wife is NOT the worst outcome. Living a life of continuous infidelity is far worse. Once you get past your fears of what may lie ahead, you will be able to make much clearer decisions.

Keep reading. Keep posting. You will be surprised how much this site can help you.

Badhurt posted 7/13/2014 09:49 AM

Strike 3

Well I always thought three strikes and you are OUT! Your wife has now cheated on you three times in ten years, has never been even remorseful about it, and whenever she gets the chance to be away from you she is looking to hop in sack with someone.
OK NOW just listed four choices for you. None of them look too appealing to me. You are already in an open marriage, but the problem is you did not know it. Well, you do now, and unless you like it only you can change it
That starts with YOU deciding you are not putting up with this anymore, regardless of how it works out. If you cannot do that the. You just suck it up and let her have her comfy marriage and bang other men when she gets the urge. She has no consequences.
Once you decide which action you want to take the peoe here can give you specific good advice. If your only goal is to stay with her, then just pick one of OK NOW's four picks. No one can help you with a magic bullet that involves no confrontation or risk of not being with ner

Dyokemm posted 7/13/2014 10:16 AM


So sorry you are here.

I think you need to file for D here.

Three A's in 10 confessions, had to be caught each serious remorse or attempts to change.

Frankly, if the thought of leaving a woman who can CONTINUOUSLY do this to you time and again causes extreme fear and self-doubt in you, then you might want to consider IC to work on co-dependency issues.

I also do not recommend staying for maternal grandfather did that and raised a 'love' child from one of the A's to boot.

The M was full of bitterness and resentment for the rest of my cheating grandmother's life...and this atmosphere has led to big issues with, and between, my mom and aunt (love child).

A D would have been a much better decision for everybody in the family.

I wish you the best of luck.

Salt posted 7/13/2014 11:31 AM

Yeah I'm sorry this is happening to you as well. I am with Happyman. I think she will continue this behavior and you must decide whether you are OK with it. I'm guessing you aren't.

Were it me I would get a few lawyer consults immediately, and I would file. You can always stop the action if warranted.

I wouldn't ask her to do anything. I would just file and then present her with papers. I would simply say she obviously isn't interested to remain faithful and that's a dealbreaker for you. Then be silent.

Search your heart, can you ever trust her again? What would you need to see for you to be able to trust her again? Those are your terms. Recognize they may not be enough. She may still find a way around them, because she has a serious character flaw. Either she gets it, takes responsibility and wants to fix herself, or she will continue.

Remorse: there's a difference between feeling sorry one got caught, and feeling deep grief at the pain and suffering caused to the BS and family. There's a difference between being afraid one is going to lose one's cake (marriage and affair pattern) so give lip service to change, and being genuinely interested to change.

How do you know the difference? Actions.

craig2001 posted 7/13/2014 11:49 AM

Three affairs in 10 years. It sounds like the first two were swept under the carpet. And that is a reason for the continuing affairs.

There is something wrong with her and that needs to be addressed.

If you do want to stay together with her, then the only way that is ever going to be possible is if she goes to therapy, individual counseling IC.

Multiple affairs can mean she has child hood issues like sex abuse or some other kind of abuse.

No matter what, if you want to stay together, she has to find out and fix her mental problems.

tfkeel posted 7/13/2014 12:32 PM

You can withdraw sex, all affection, romance, do whatever you want in the marriage, build your own separate friendships;

That's the choice that I took.

Maybe your wife will find this intolerable

Mine didn't. In fact, I think she was very happy with the whole thing. She got exactly what she wanted, the reason she married me in the first place.

She had a dad for her son who would love him and treat him as his own.

She had someone to support her financially and allow her to care for him without the burden of having to work.

She had freedom to exercise her brokenness and use a stream of men for validation.

It wasn't the choice I wanted. However, it was financially and logistically easier than a divorce.

Uhtred posted 7/13/2014 12:47 PM

I don't have much to say that hasn't been already shared here. I'm sorry for you pain brother. Use this opportunity to be better yourself and not worry about her and her problems. You can't fix them only she can and she has to want to.

Now is the time to show her the consequences of betrayal by doing the right thing which is detachment and removing her from the marital bed and house. If she never learns them she will never change. I know you said you loved her and you really must after 3 strikes. Draw the line now or in ten years you'll be on the 10th strike still scratching your head. Keep posting and sharing.

Bowledover posted 7/13/2014 13:07 PM

Tfkeel, are you still together today?

Also, is it wrong to want to contact the guy and to want to contact his gf and let her know?

Tom67 posted 7/13/2014 13:10 PM

It is the right thing to do and let his gf know.
File for d and DNA test the kids in front of her so she knows what you think of her word.
Sorry you are here but she is a serial cheater.

OK now posted 7/13/2014 13:13 PM

A few years I had a conversation with a friend who was cheating just like your wife. She deeply cared for her BH and her marriage.
She told me "You have no idea of what I get out of these affairs; the passion, the sex, danger, excitement and the feeling of being worshipped like a goddess by the OM. Knowing he has to treat me like a precious jewel if he is to get what he wants. His incredible sexual lust; willing to risk his marriage just to have me"

Thats what you are up against and only divorce proceeding have a chance of bringing your cheating wife out of the clouds, and back to the reality of what she is going to lose. Since you don't want to initiate divorce, I expect you will be reflecting on quite a few more episodes of infidelity.

tfkeel posted 7/13/2014 13:14 PM

No, fWW passed away 1990. We were together until then, 4 years.

Agree that it's the right thing to tell the other people.

Badhurt posted 7/13/2014 13:28 PM

Strike 3

You can keep searching for the answer you want. It is not there. OK Now just have you the mindset of your wife. If divorce is off the table you need to just sick it up and live with it. You are accepting a open marriage.

There is no sugar coating it.

heme posted 7/13/2014 14:14 PM

I agree you need to draw a line.. She isn't remorseful, she just regrets you figured it out because it makes life harder on her.. Personally 3 strikes and you are out in my book. Especially if she denies and lies after you confront her until you force the truth out of her.

I know its tempting to stay for the children (Lord knows thats why I didn't walk out the first time and Im still sticking around) but what are you teaching your children. I don't want my sons to grow up thinking its OK to cheat and lie on their spouses like their Dad (and grand dad and great grand dad) did and I don't want my daughters to think its OK for their husbands to cheat and lie to them. That is exactly what I told my WH as well. Hes setting it up for our children to have some messed up relationships when they are adults

Bowledover posted 7/13/2014 15:05 PM

I guess I'm looking for the miracle answer. I realize she needs to have remorse (she may or may not), and I need to draw the line...but I was hoping someone would have a happy ending story to a similar situation.

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