You need to decide if you love him and want to stay in the marriage. He needs to recognize his issues that led him to all this "attention seeking". In other words, there's work to do.
Counseling would be a good idea. Also read the articles in The Healing Library in the upper left corner.
Were there consequences when he cheated on you the first time? Did the two of you "rug sweep" his first affair? Is he truly remorseful?
There is no time limit on when you have to make any decisions (I'm 9 months since Dday). But this forum and The Healing Library will help you set boundaries, get advice and be a source of support.
Others will be along with more advice. Sorry you are here - and good luck!
I am also sorry to say that he is probably minimizing and/or trickle truthing -- that is, there is probably more than what he has revealed to you.
You state that sometimes you were busy or didn't have time for him. Well, he had options. He could have pursued, suggested, or even offered an ultimatum for marriage counseling. He could have filed for divorce. He could have gone to counseling just by himself and maybe gotten some guidance there on how to deal with something in his life that he was unhappy with.
Instead he just had an affair. This is incredibly selfish of him. I'll bet there were things that you were unhappy with in your relationship. You didn't cheat though.
The him feeling lonely, needing attention, etc. That may be true. But guess what -- for a lot of waywards that was true long before they got married. It had nothing to do with their spouse. It is actually some broken in this person that needs to be addressed. Often waywards cannot find value in themselves so they seek it out externally.
Again this is such a crappy discovery for you and I'm so sorry you find yourself here. There are lots of friendly people here though and you will also get lots of great advice here.
[This message edited by saturnpatrick at 10:31 PM, July 31st (Thursday)]
There are issues in every relationship, but not everyone chooses to cheat.
That going to London just to see her would "seem too much like cheating."
^^He's full of sh*t. Cheaters lie. What's the difference if he was cheating at the first location or London? In London it would feel like cheating but it doesn't feel like cheating elsewhere?
He was only working away for six weeks, and in that short amount of time, he meets someone, cheats, and plans a weekend getaway.
Feeling lonely is no excuse for cheating. Needing attention is no excuse for cheating. He could have communicated his feelings to you instead of bringing this nightmare into your life. If he doesn't fix what's broken inside of him, he will certainly do this again as this has been his second rodeo. IC is a must IMO if you decide to reconcile.
Please get yourself tested for STDS asap, him as well, non-negotiable.
You don't have to make any decisions now, take time to process all of this. Take care of yourself as best as you can as your precious children need you.
But what do I do now? Should I be "grateful" he doesn't love her and wasn't going to leave? Whilst I can't imagine being able to forgive him, or being intimate with him, do I break apart our family for the sake of 2 weeks? I would find it hard with children on my own full time, and know that my 3 year old would miss daddy. It's worth mentioning that he does not usually work away, this was to be the last week. Any advice most welcome.
There's NOTHING about his lying and cheating that should make you feel grateful or relieved. So he basically used some woman for his own selfish needs while he was working out of town and now supposedly intends to throw her away like yesterday's garbage when he blows back out of town at the end of his work assignment? It's almost a given he lied to this girl and told her he was single. In fact, I'd bet the farm on that.
And since he had absolutely no qualms at all about conning some woman into spending time with him purely for his own amusement while he was away from home, his claim about not crossing the line 'physically' with her just sounds utterly ridiculous. That's kind of like a bank robber claiming he won't run a right light because it's against the law. Please.
The guy is a sneak and he's already proven to you he's more than capable of cheating, as he did years ago at the beginning of your relationship. He took advantage of his time away from home to get a few cheap thrills and when you caught him, he turned it on YOU and blamed you for it.
Considering his complete lack of integrity, that doesn't surprise me at all.
But do be warned - he feels completely justified for his sleazy behavior. Instead of feeling horrified for how he's hurt you, he's JUSTIFYING what he did. That means he has zero remorse.
He'll cheat again the second the opportunity falls in his lap. You can jump around like a trained seal for the next 50 years, doing his bidding, bending over backwards to please him, giving him everything he desires, and he'll STILL cheat on you the second the opportunity arises.
I guess you need to decide how much disrespect you're willing to take from him.
Good luck to you.