There are still some things that trigger bad thoughts or emotions. I guess that's valid, it's been less than a week since D-Day. While I want to move towards reconciliation, I also want to prepare for the worst possible scenario, which is for us to get divorced and for me to lose custody of my children - even though she is the one who had the affair on me.
So far, I have:
1. Collected one email of evidence indicating an affair - both physical and emotional. I tried to forward more, but when she recovered her smartphone, she deleted ALL and any of the emails related to the Other Man (OM). Some included picture attachments. Unless I get a subpoena for the records from the email provider, I'll never see the other emails. She did this within the first 10 minutes of discovery - we were in a public place and I did not want to do anything that could be perceived as abusive by a bystander. So I have one piece of evidence and she has willingly admitted to the Emotional Affair (EA) and Physical Affair (PA).
2. I had her test for STDs and had myself tested as well. We are awaiting results. Until I get the results back, I refuse to be sexually active with her.
3. I searched all of our phone records for contact with the OM (Other Man) and she has been truthful about this. With this she has been committed - as far as I can tell. I don't have access to her work phone records.
4. I scheduled marriage counseling and she agreed.
5. I also scheduled to meet with an attorney to prepare myself for the possibility that this reconciliation does not work. Is this smart? Should I do so? My fear is that although she is the WS (Wayward Spouse) that not only
6. I have not told any friends - other than a former coworker who is out of state, about this crisis in our relationship. I am seeing and was previously seeing a psychiatrist so that I could put my own problems to rest and get back on track. This was BEFORE I discovered the affair. In fact, she actually started having the affair at roughly the same time as my initial sessions with my therapist. I'd rather not tell anyone else who is a close friend or family member as I want to keep my marriage and my family intact.
The QUESTION: Is there anything else I should be doing to help us move forward? OR to protect myself and my kids if this doesn't reconcile?
Thank you in advance.
D-Day, June 10, 2012
So far, I have:
OK, so we know what YOU have done.
What has your WW done to begin the process of proving to you that she wants to be in the marriage?
It is the one big way to have 2 sets of eyes watching these two.
I have learned here that affairs are like mushrooms, they fourish in the dark, but when the light is shown on them they wither.
I didn't want to tell the OW H because I thought he would throw her out and they would get together. WHat happened was, I didn't tell him and they saved up HIS money to help her move out about 8 months later. So I would have been better off telling him.
Everyone has different circumstances/situation but in my opinion you have done things well and it sounds like dealing with things well.
My two bits of advice (looking back on things what I should have done right away) tell the WIFE of the OM immediately.
Also take time to make YOURSELF feel good. If exercise helps - do it. Rest - do it. Time alone - do it. Special time with your children - do it. You will need all the strength you can get. Take a moment to think about things that make you feel good, relaxed, full of energy and feel good about yourself.
[This message edited by hurthusband99 at 6:41 PM, August 26th (Monday)]
To answer some specific questions. She is giving full transparency and disclosure. Giving me access to all email accounts/social media accounts and her smart phone. Unfortunately, as I stated in my original post, she deleted all of the communications she had with him when she snatched back her phone when I confronted her. But I do have two emails of evidence.
In regards to the OM - he is SINGLE. Not/Never married. And I think he is a sick individual, as he was trying to substitute my family for his. See, because of his issues with substances and the law, he lost any visitation with his daughter from his "baby's mama." He has no one. His parents are dead. There really isn't anyone I can talk to on his end. If he had a BS - I would have had contact with her already. Any suggestions?
In regards to my wife - she hasn't fought the demands I've put on her at all. She hasn't fought back at all. She is afraid, deathly afraid of what could happen. This has already brought us closer. I think already assuming something happened back in April and May has helped but still, I'm working through this and I'm sure there are bound to be bumps in the road. While I've done my best to maintain the 180, I've also had two or three incidents of pure anger or spiteful comments come out at her. I'm doing all I can.
I am not at fault for the affair, but I am 50% responsible for the marriage problems. I was not meeting her emotional needs. At the same time, she also has several issues to deal with - namely daddy issues - her father died suddenly last year and while she was close to him, she revealed to me earlier this year that he sexually abused her and no one in her family believed her. Her mother basically blew her off and literally told her - "that was 20 years ago, get over it." Both of her sisters accused her of lying since they weren't touched - how arrogant of them. Her IC will start as soon on Thursday. To make sure she goes, I will personally be dropping her off and picking her up.
If she does this you have all the evidence you need.
This could come in handy if you eventually go down the D road or if she starts rewriting your history.
Ask her to do a complete timeline of the affair. If you are not able to cope with details ask her to do 2 one with all the details and Another without all the details.
If you are having problems trusting her (regarding the affair) then do a popy and ask her if she left anything out of the timeline she made.
I would really consider exposing the affair to at least her family.
Personally I think you've done everything just about right. In no way one week after Dday was I that organized. I was still stunned with the "frying pan in the face."
In all retrospect she probably wasn't that unhappy in your marriage. She was more unhappy within herself. But projecting that on to you. You can certainly accept your 50% blame but her behavior is her's alone. My advice is if you do want to reconcile (and it sounds like you do) then yes keep it to yourselves. But know this....she is the one that has to do MOST of the hard work here. You address your issues but she has to win YOU back. Not the other way around. Many of us here who felt we were at fault and tried to "nice" our WS's back will tell you it didn't work. Be very firm with her and continue the shock and awe of her consequences. Keep her knowing you are still considering divorcing her. I would even go as far as giving her your lawyer's business card and tell her it's just in case there is future need for her to contact him. this way she knows you are serious in your actions. Whether or not you have additional emails really isn't going to matter since she confessed. Infidelity is rarely awarded or punished in family courts anymore unless you can show gross negligence (child abuse, etc). So don't worry about that so much and concentrate on everything else. You already know the truth.
[This message edited by SeanFLA at 8:22 AM, August 27th (Tuesday)]
"You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have." ~ Bob Marley
I caution you though, you are running on adrenaline in self preservation mode. I was much the same as you when I found out. Trying to figure out everything I needed to do right away, getting organized, accessing what has happened, basically trying to figure out the fastest route through this mess as possible. Eventually the rush to fix it all wears off and you start to think about what happened to you. Focus on taking care of yourself through this all, eat well, exercise, focus on you, not just your family.
I am not at fault for the affair, but I am 50% responsible for the marriage problems. I was not meeting her emotional needs.
Nothing you said above is necessarily wrong, just be careful. What I have done to separate things is I don't let a conversation that my WW has on her A lead to a conversation on any needs she feels were not met. I let her know if she wants to talk about her needs, we can have a separte conversation about that. Don't accept any responsibility for the A, it will only hinder the hard work your WW needs to do to address her issues.
Wow, you've given me alot more to think about.
@Tomtefar - what is a popy? Also, the recorder is a great idea, but it could also be too much too quickly and scare her into not saying anything. It all depends on the scenario. For example, I'm not going to whip out a recorder after I come home and I tell her, "I just came back from an 'appointment.' Let's have a talk." I don't want her to feel that I'm somehow blackmailing her. She needs to say this because she wants to give full disclosure - and so far, I feel that she has given me mostly full disclosure. It bothers me tremendously however, that she destroyed the emails and texts they had. I asked my cell provider if I could have access to them, and they told me that this only possible through a subpoena or a court order.
Question: What would exposing the affair to her family do? What purpose would it have? They like me, but I know they would protect her at all costs. They're not bad people, but they would protect her at all costs. Alot of that has to do with them protecting themselves. This is a family that tends to close ranks at even a hint of being exposed for something potentially painful or embarrassing, even if it will help the family in the long run. On the other hand, I can't hide the recorder either - that's not admissable in a court of law - not in New York State. She has to be aware that she is being recorded.
@SeanFLA - you're on top of it. You're sharp. I'm trying to live the 180 and see it through at the same time. I tell her and remind her that if she doesn't get therapy and doesn't get help, that I will initiate divorce and I will seek primary or possibly full custody of our two daughters (4 and 2). It's up to her. But I'm not playing around. In NY, infidelity is not considered as a factor in divorce unless marital assets were used. It's treated like a business partnership that is being broken up. That is why family court where custody is argued is separate than where you get divorced, which is the county "Superior Court."
Also, you're right. I believe she was projecting her own issues and her self-esteem problems which have nothing to do with me onto me?! Ain't that a bitch?! I'm serious, when I say, if she does not improve herself, I'm afraid she will pass her issues onto our daughters and for that alone, I will seek primary, if not full custody. As she would be proving that she is not the best option for parenting our children on a full time basis. She claims that taking her kids from her would destroy her, make her suicidal. I told her, if it does, you're just proving my point, that you are not the best option for full time parenting of our children, if you chose to leave the relationship. That is why I would need to seek full custody. I also have a card up my sleeve. She uses marijuana on an occasional basis to "relieve anxiety." It is not legal in my state to do so. I simply would need to call for a "drug test." But I don't want to do that. She is a good, but damaged person who really needs help. She loves our children more than anything. But she needs to deal with the issues of her life first. If I don't think she is, I will leave her, and I will do everything in my legal rights to take my children with me.
@ReunitePangea - You're 1000% correct, I'm running on adrenaline right now and at some point it will wear off and I'll be left holding the bag, angry that it is empty. I'm definitely using the technique you are suggesting, separating the affair from the marriage issues in conversation. We've already had one discussion like this and although I didn't formalize or summarize it in the same way you did. She began to take control of the conversation, focusing on the issues of our marriage and I told her "Stop the bullshit! We'll have that conversation with the therapist present. We're talking about your affair and you're not gettin' out of this! ANSWER ALL QUESTIONS - that's all for now. We'll talk about the other issues later."
I accept ZERO responsibility for the affair. I'm not the one who lacked the maturity to talk to her husband/partner about issues she was having and instead chose to sleep with another man and have an emotional affair. This is all on her.
FYI - I just found out that the other man (OM) lives only a mile away or so from us. Now I'm thinking we may need to move. I'm afraid of the violent acts I would commit, if I ran into him. I hope to God/Allah/Jah/Budda that my kids are with me, so I'll maintain control. Not that I wouldn't - but you never know.
I'll be left holding the bag, angry that it is empty
I understand why you feel that way but take the time to read other stories on here. Your story sucks just like all the rest of them do but do realize that you do have some things going for you right now. You have a WW that is immediately sorry for her actions and is starting to give you remorse for these actions. You also have a why it happened, like all why's they all suck. The story you present, abuse followed by death of her father is a classic A recipe. I don't present that like it is an acceptable excuse but just that if you were a member of this horrible club we belong to the chain of events is not suprising. There will be lots of work to get through all of these issues but the road map for your MC and her IC will be very clear. Finally, your wife wants your marriage and family - many BS wish to have a WS that just wanted that. Your bag is not empty, its just not what you thought you had before finding all of this out.
She began to take control of the conversation, focusing on the issues of our marriage and I told her "Stop the bullshit! We'll have that conversation with the therapist present. We're talking about your affair and you're not gettin' out of this! ANSWER ALL QUESTIONS - that's all for now. We'll talk about the other issues later."
Different types of people deal with all of this differently. The thing that I have done through this whole process is I have kept my cool during all of it. I have not raised my voice, I have not yelled.....I have expressed that my WW's actions have made me angry but I still kept my cool when doing that. When the needs in the marriage conversation starts, I end it calmly by simply stating that "if she had needs that were not being met, she should have told me about them rather than avoiding the issue and having an A instead. I can not read minds and those needs were just excuses for doing what she did. I am interested in hearing your needs but I will not accept them in an effort to place blame on the A." That simple, there really is no rational arguement that can counter those points so I don't even bother raising my voice to express them. Find your own style but that is what works for me to deflect that type of thinking. I got the "not meeting my needs" excuse, I don't know many WHs that don't get it and in my case my WW started her LTA the day we first met many years ago - LOL - how could it be my fault day 1 I knew her. Those facts don't stop them from trying that excuse. Many WS are conflict avoiders, I know my WW is one, I try to teach how to deal with conflict by example through my own actions.
Until you are sure that the remorse your WW feels is genuinely related to desecrating your relationship, and you both have made a commitment to work on your marriage, eschewing marital intimacy wouldn't be a bad idea. Also some STD's take months to give a absolutely positive result; the OM was young and single which is a high risk age group.
Yes do see an attorney. Do NOT tell her you are doing this, you do have the right to protect yourself, and your kids right now.
Just because you are man, does not make you the one who would not end up with your kids. In addition you need to get the What If's answered this will help you make decsions further down the road, should she not give you what you need, and not do the work for R.
The last thing I want to encourage you to push it so make sure NC (no contact) has been established, so that this douche isn't trying to contact her, and her vice versa. In this process you also need to verify that she is being truthful. This means that you have to snoop. Many WS's are scared out of their mind when finally caught, and will bargain their way through false R. Saying and doing all the right things while taking the A underground, by setting up new emails, getting a pay as you go phone, etc. Put a keylogger on her computer, put a VAR in her vehicle. Get the proof that she is doing the hard work, and that she is NOT in contact with OM. This helps you to rebuild trust, and if she really gets it, and is really commited to R, she will understand why you have to do this. Again, protect yourself and you kids.
Know that there are many folks here who have great advice, and suggestions.
@ReunitePangea - I need to do a better job of keeping my cool, but I can't help it. Sometimes I get angry at what happened. This is against the 180 philosophy, I'm aware, but she needs to just take it. This is the price of her 4 to 5 month fling until I can get my temper - which is usually a non-issue - under control.
@OK Now - you're right. I had not been thinking of it that way. I'm not sure what she is responding to more the possible dissolution of the relationship and family or that she hurt me and gave into someone else. It is certainly something I will bring up tonight and in our MC session on Saturday.
@tushnurse - cool ID name. I will do my best to not let her gaslight me into a false recovery. I will install a keyloggin app/program into our shared computers and also tell her I need one for her phone as well. She volunteered to change her existing cellphone number and has forwarded me all communications with her boss in regards to blocking the OM's phone number to her work phone. As of yesterday, they've blocked his number.
I looked at all of the phone records and counted the texts, calls and minutes used. It looks like the affair peaked in March and April. No coincidence, until last week, I considered April the worst month of my life and of my relationship with my wife. This was before I was aware of the A. Activity dropped off severely in mid May and stayed that way until I met him in June - presented to me as her classmate. At this point I grew suspicious when I revisited the amount of activity between them and started to look at her cell phone. It looks like they argued and according to phone records she did not initiate any contact with him at any point forward. She claimed she was last intimate with him in Mid May. She told me she was turned off that he told her he was dating a new girl and he "slowed down contact" when she told him that I was suspicious of an affair.
According to phone records, the last time she initiated a contact with him was in early July when she claimed she told him to "fuck off and leave me alone." A conversation that lasted 2 minutes. He attempted contact with her 47 times afterwards - a combination of texts and calls. His last attempted contact was August 5, 2013.
She also has volunteered to take a lie detector test with any questions asked in regards to details of the affair.