It served two-fold. #1, they confirmed I wasn't crazy for feeling the way I did (i.e., they agreed what my WW did really was as bad as it seemed). That served to relieve a lot of pent up stress and tension from holding it in for so long. #2, since an IC is not available 24/7 the way this small group is, now I had a safety net to use when I don't have time to schedule an appointment with the IC right away. They check on me periodically, too, because we know that we can sometimes get stuck in our fog of pity, woe, and self-apathy.
I don't mean keeping it quiet from someone who you really know has your back and will support you without spreading your private struggles to others. I told my brother, my sister-in-law, and my best friend. Ironically it was the family, not the best buddy who betrayed my confidence. It did me a world of good to have people in real life to talk to, but I think it's important to be able to really trust those folks. For me, reconciling was hard enough without having to worry that some people that learned about the A through gossip or others, may later judge me or my H. I didn't want to have to do any unnecessary additionaly"damage control." Since we are successfully R'd, I'm glad I kept, or tried to keep, the A to a very small number of incredibly supportive people.
1) Once it's out, you can never put it back.
2) You may have to deal with people who take his side (like his family and friends, possibly)
3) If you decide ultimately to R--you may find people won't look at your WH the same way which can affect relationships. (losing friends, family members being cold, etc)
4) Telling the kids can have all sorts of bad fall out. Loss of respect for the father for cheating. Loss of respect for the mother for staying. There can be behavioral issues and definately psychological and emotional issues. If you tell the kids, do it in age appropriate ways.
That's all I can think of at the moment...I'm sure there will be many more answers from other SIers who have been where you are, deena.
What is he doing to heal you guys MC? IC? Reading?
What are you doing?
I edit, therefore I am.
He is trying to be a better husband. He helps more at home and bends over backwards to answer questions. Most times he handles it well, but does get upset other times (namely if he just worked a 14 hour day and I hit him up with questions).
Counseling was limited to a couple of sessions as finances were tight this year. I know divorce can cost more, but realistically, it was not in the cards for us to do much counseling.
Honestly, he doesn't read much about it unless I send him a link and tell him to read it. I do that often. He never reaches out to find his own material to read. He cries often at this and hates himself for hit. I see the pain in his eyes. I just don't know if I care anymore. Divorce is my decision of the moment; it gives me peace and relief.